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Reminiscent, Historical and Personal 


A. W. Sparks. 

Copyright Secured by A. W. Sparks. 









The Children of the Veterans 
Of the Lost Cause, 


The storv here told, bv oat of that band, 
lr\ memorv, harnessed with thought, 

Journeyed back, through wtars. to Dixie land, 
And to vou, this message has brought. 


—The Author 


Right of Secession 5-8 

Hot Year 9 

The Great Comet 10 

Election of Mr. Lincoln 11-12 

The Titus County Greys 14 

Col. W. B. Sims 16 

Company Officers 17 

Horse Race 20-22 

Gen . Cooper's Indians 23-25 

Capt. Stuart's death 37 

Col. Stanwaite 41 

Extracts from Victor M. Rose 46-52 

Gen. Seigle at Bentonville. 53 

Whistling Dick 59-60 

C. C. Carr ■ • • • 63-64 

Col. D. W. Jones 66-69 

Recollections of March 74-76 

At Vicksburg 78-79 

March to Georgia .... * 82 

Blank 86-96 

Gen. McCook 101-102 

The Ruin of Surrender 103-104 

Gen. Ross' Report 105-109 

In Mississippi 116 

President Davis' Fame 118-119 

Vicksburg 120 

Tyler Prisoners 121 

" " ' J __ 123 

66*46021 nousTOK ^buc MB&Ai* x 

KQ11S7 131 H7 " 

A- \) 5 bajvkoJ 





The Children of the Veterans 
Of the Lost Cause, 


The storv here told, bv one of that band, 
la memorv, harnessed with thought, 

Journeyed back, through vears. to Dixie land, 
And to vou, this message hos brought. 


i 1 1 ■..■• 


Right of Secession 5-8 

Hot Year 9 

The Great Comet 10 

Election of Mr. Lincoln 11-12 

The Titus County Greys 14 

Col. W. B. Sims 16 

Company Officers 17 

Horse Race 20-22 

Gen. Cooper's Indians 23-25 

Capt. Stuart's death 37 

Col. Stanwaite 41 

Extracts from Victor M. Rose 46-52 

Gen. Seigle at Bentonville. 53 

Whistling Dick 59-60 

C. C. Carr ■ • ■ ■ 63-64 

Col. D. W. Jones 66-69 

Recollections of March 74-76 

At Vicksburg 78-79 

March to Georgia 82 

Blank 86-96 

Gen. McCook 101-102 

The Ruin of Surrender 103-104 

Gen. Ross' Report 105-109 

In Mississippi 116 

President Davis' Fame 118-119 

Vicksburg 120 

Tyler Prisoners 121 

Marshall Arsenal 123 

9th Texas Regimental and Company Officers. . 125-126 

3rd Texas Organization 127-130 

1st Texas Battery 130-131 

Battle of Oak Hills 137- 

Organization of 6th Texas 153 

Death of Capt. Harris 159 

Battle of Chustenahlah 163 

Gen. Van Dorn 168 

Retreat from Elk Horn 181 

Dismounted to cross the Mississippi 182-183 

Quotation from Judge Hogg 185 

Corinth, Miss 185-187 

Ross' Brigade 196-197 

Detail for recruits 199-200 

Messenger order 203 

Captain of Holly Springs 208-210 

Gen. Granger and Van Dorn 224-226 

V A 

Fall of Vicksburg 229-237 

Return to Georgia 234-235 

Ross and Mabry with Forest 241 

Discipline 247-249 

Visiting the Hospital 250-254 

Nicknaming 257-259 

Artillery service 260-262 

Small funeral 263-265 

Parson Ische 266-267 

Quent Boothe 268-270 

Old Butch's recollection 271-273 

The beginning of the end 278-285 

Adenda 285-288 

The close and reconstruction 289-292 

John H. Reagan's speech 293-309 

Gen. L. S. Ross. . .* 310-332 

Gen. Jno. S. Griffith. . .„ 333-349 

Gen. J. W. Whitfield 350-351 

Col. D. W. Jones 352-353 

Col. Jack Whorton 354-355 

Col. John H. Broocks 356-360 

Col. Elkanah Greer 361-362 

Col. H. P. Mabry 363-367 

Capt. Chas. S. Stuart 368-369 

Capt. Perry Evans 370-371 

Capt. Jas. English 372-373 

Lt. Lade Miller 374 

Lt. Buster Haynes 376 

Lt. John A. Coplin 375 

Lt. Wm. Chambers ; 377 

Lt. Henry Haynes 378 

Lt. Wm. Moore 379 

Hon. O. N. Hollingsworth 380-381 

Camp Chase 382-388 

Northern view 389-392 

• » 



Your Servant, 



On August 10th, 1897, in reunion assembled at Com- 
merce, Texas. The secretary was ordered to gather and 
compile all matter of a reminiscent or historical nature 
that pertained to the services of Ross' Brigade, Texas 
- Cavalry. The result of his labors and the data in clip- 
pings were placed before the Historical Committee on 
August 9th, 1898, in reunion assembled at Terrell, Tex- 
as, who offered the following report as taken from min * 

The committee on History then offered the following 
report : 

We have examined the manuscript submitted by our 
secretary, comrade, A. W. Sparks, and cheerfully in- 
dorse it as correct, in the main, and consider it a3 a fair 
and impartial history, of the principal part taken by the 
Ross Brigade in the lost cause, and it, in our opinion, 
together with the history written by our lite comrade, 
Victor M. Rose, would make a history, not only inter- 
esting to the survivors of the Brigade, and their fami- 
lies, but to all ex-Confederates and lovers of the dear 
Southland, and we would be pleased to see it in book 
form and in the library of at least all the Brigade. 
There would be in the book a great deal of matter that 
will be both interesting and instructive, particularly to 
the young and the families of the old soldiers, such as 
amusing and thrilling incidents, of camp and field life, 
together with extracts from the writings and speeches 
of prominent speakers, and statesmen, on the cause and 

justice, of the war. We therefore indorse and recom- 
mend its favorable consideration by this Association. 

H. C. DIAL, Major 9th Texas Cavalry, 
E. O. WILLIAMS, Capt. Legion, 
P. F. ROSS, Col. 6th Texas Cavalry, 
T. J. GEE, Capt. 3rd Texas Cavalry, 
EDWIN HAWKINS, Col, Legion. 
DAN COFFMAN, 6th Texas Cavalry, 
M. G. MILLER, 9th Texas Cavalry. 
The report was adopted and the committee continued. 
On August 9th, 1899, in reunion assembled. 
The Historical committee then made verbal report of 
their labors during the past year through E. O. Wil- 
liams chairman, in which he informed us of valuable 
papers that had been added to files in possession of that 
committee. The Association ordered the Secretary as 
custodian of papers to hold them subject to order of 
said committee. 

On August 8th, 1900, in reunion assembled at Lan- 
caster, Texas, the labors of Historical Committee were 

On August 14th, 1901. In reunion assembled at Sul- 
phur Springs, Texas. The report of the Historical 
Committee was discussed at length — and A. W. Sparks, 
custodian of all the papers was ordered to place all 
matter in his hands before Capt. Sid S. Johnson, pub- 
lisher of The Confederate Soldier, who was with his 
help ordered to at once prepare for the press and have 
printed in book form, all papers in his hands pertaining 
to the services of Ross' Brigade of Texas Cavalry that 
would tend to instruct, or entertain our children, and 
others who may be pleased to read. 

In obedience to orders, from the Ross Brigade Asso- 
ciation, this volume is here presented — as result of our 



This volume has been compiled from the rec- 
olection mostly of a private soldier in the war 
between the States, and goes to the public for 
what it is worth, hoping that it may meet an 
appreciated public. It was written in a remini- 
scent way, as the events of the great struggle 
has been impressed on the memory of the long- 
a-go. The Author claims not to be fully pre- 
pared to give the reading public a volume of 
such a comprehensive a nature, but hopes that a 
generous public may find many facts that will be 
of interest that the mantle of charity may be 
thrown around him, in this, his first and likely 
the only effort of nis life, to put in print, a book. 

History, if it be true, is made up from the most 
important and smally events of a people who 
tried to maintain their rights, as justly and patri- 

otically belongs to a free people. With such in 
view will risk the criticisms of the public and 
hand this volumn down to future generations 
that in the end many facts culled from it may find 
its lodgment in History from the pen of one more 
able than 

The Author. 


Chapter I. 

It will be needless for me to write that I was raised in 
the State of Texas, in the northeast part, and those who 
have studied Texas history will readily know that, from 
the policy of the Mexican government in allowing no colo- 
nies to settle within thirty leagues of the Texas line be- 
fore Texas independence. This policy had settled that 
section of Texas with a poorer population, and in con- 
sequence churches, school houses and other institutions 
were far behind other parts of the State, hence it follows 
that the Texas pen if weilded by sons or daughters of this 
section of Texas who have recollections of the "Great 
War," will be weilded by those without college training 
or any other claim to high literary attainments. And so 
this writer, expecting no name with the literary and no 


fame from the public, places his "Recollections," with 
all their faultiness, before the people, hoping that from 
these rude scrolls some historical facts may in future be 
gleaned by wiser heads and placed before generations 
now living and those yet unborn, that will teach them 
that the pioneer citizens of Texas were not "Rebels," 
were not "Law Breakers ,, but were only the common 
people possessed of convictions that had grown and de- 
veloped with them, that had become part of their very 
nature and were strong even unto death, as was demon- 
strated on many a battle field. 

"States Rights" was the keynote, "States Rights" 
was the the great question above all other questions in 
American politics, and its features, pro and con, had 
occupied the minds of our greatest statesmen for more 
than fifty years. "States Rights within the Union" had 
been the battle cry in Congressional halls, and was the 
common cry throughout all the thinly settled South and 
West, and was re-echoed from the great central cities of 
America. States Rights was Democracy, States Rights 
was the sheet anchor and boon of our fathers, the hope 
of the Nation and the cause of secession, and was defend- 
ed by the strong arm of the South, for it was the common 
cause of the rich and the poor, the high and the low, the 
wise and the ignorant, with armies small in number and 
poorly equipped. "Asked for Secession and met Inva- 
sion" in four long years of bloody war for States Rights 
and liberty. Thirty and three years have elapsed since 
the last gun was fired, since the last Southern soldier 
laid down his arm3 and accepted a United States parole, 
in which he promised to no longer oppose the forces of 
the United States, to engage in no rebellion, but to com- 
ply faithfully with all the laws of the United States and 
the State wherein he might reside in after life, for the 
consideration of amity and protection from the United 
States of America. A contract that has been faithfully 
kept on both sides, but few exceptions having come to 


my knowledge. And to-day among the few survivors 
of the men who fought those battles none are more loyal 
to the powers that be, none more free from strife and 
none are more willing that the true cause of the conflict 
should be fully known, and the wrong placed where jus- 
tice tips the scales. We are the men who fought the bat- 
tles for States Rights, we are the men who surrendered 
to the armies of the United States, we are the men who 
claim our citizenship as a birth- right, and we love our 

State right of secession was surrendered and coercion 
was victorious in arms, and these things were thus set- 
tled and are legally settled right. We have accepted the 
final and our lives have been made to fit those decrees 
of arms. But the mind, not subject to arms or legisla- 
tion, remains much the same stubborn and unyeild- 
ing to-day as it was the day we enlisted as a Texas sol- 
dier, sworn to fight to the death and to stand before the 
missies of war on many fields of battle. Thus to-day as 
in the past the Southern cause to the South was right, 
and if each of the graves of our dead should be repre- 
sented in future history by a simple exclamation point, 
the future historian would be impressed with its great 
importance to future republics that may be the homes of 
liberty loving people. 

These recollections will commence with the year 1860, 
when the writer was a mere boy in his sunny teens, who 
the reader is to see as a common farmer boy with only 
enough education to read and write, but without any 
more knowledge of the language than would be gathered 
from such books as could be found on the shelves of the 
pioneer settler. A few histories such as would be used 
in our common schools, the county paper filled with such 
matter as might suit the editor, and you have the sum 
total of the information of the writer at the time of which 
I write, and with these disadvantages take into consid- 
eration the long lapse of time, together with the poison- 


ed and cowed mind while undergoing the struggle for 
bread to sustain life, and your generous nature will make 
all the apology that will be asked when you are familiar 
with the aim and purpose of this writing, which is to dis- 
abuse the minds of our children, who have been taught 
that we, in the great war, were rebels and engaged in a 
rebellion against the United States and her laws, for it 
is not uncommon, even among collegiates, for such er- 
roneous belief to exist. Hence this attempt at writing 
what we feel to be the truth, asking God to bestow such 
wisdom upon the writer that he may make plain the truth, 
to the end that children of the Southern States may read 
and realize that they are not the children of rebels to be 
placed under the ban of public opinion, but are children 
of patriots, law loving, law abiding and law defending 
patriots, who have fought the bloodiest battles known to 
civilization for the constitution, for liberty and for right 
and who are proud of their record. After thirty years of 
humiliation, filled with threats, filled with toadying hon- 
ors to those who beat us, without repentance, we stand 
realizing that: 

"Our crime seems worst to human view, 
But God will judge between the two." 


Chapter II. 

The year 1880 was one of those hot years ; It was a 
hard year on the people of Texas. Politics was red with 
heat; hot times in the United States Senate, hot in Con- 
gress, hot at the State capitols, hot with threats both 
North and South. "Secession! coercion!" was heard 
from the stump, it was read from pamphlet and paper, it 
resounded in legislative halls, it was in the mouths of the 
people of all classes. In the South it was "Secession in 
order to preserve the rights of the constitution." In the 
North it was "Coercion to preserve the Union." There 
was no middle ground upon which to compromise, and 
statesmen were at their wits end. The muttering of war 
was on the horizon ; all knew it, all dreaded it, but all 
agreed that it must come. Y^ar was in the air, and great 
was the rejoicing in the South when we heard of sympa- 
thizers in the great cities North, New York and Balti- 
more, from whom we expected great help in money, mu- 
nitions and men for the coming struggle, which hope, 
let me say, never materialized. It was war from the 
plowhandles to the pulpit ; it was war from the head of 
the family who talked and read it to the children; it was 
war that was sung by our sisters and sweethearts, and it 
was war in our hearts, and that war hangs now upon our 
memories. As if to add to the great political heat the 
weather of that summer was distressingly hot and num- 
bers of villages throughout Texas were burned, probably 
from spontaneous combustion, as the thermometer reach- 
ed 114 degrees Fahrenheit in the shade at my father's 
house where I was staying, and sulphur matches caught 


fire and burned their heads off in the little wooden boxes 
in which they were kept. I here record this fact as it 
was under my own observation, and our house would 
have been burned had the fire not been discovered in 
time to prevent. So hot was politics that it was generally 
agreed that the burning was the work of incendiaries 
sent from the North to burn us out so that we could not 
resist invasion in the then expected war. Such were the 
conclusions of a mad people. 

The Great Comet. 

It was during this heated summer that the great comet 
of Charles V. made its appearance about midway in the 
eastern heavens, just south of the zodiacal belt. The 
people had been looking for it, for it had been announ- 
ced by astronomers as approaching the sun, and from the 
position of this earth in her orbit it was feared by some 
of those eminent in science that it would strike the earth 
and destroy it. We could almost see to read by its light. 
The body of the comet was about three diameters larger 
than the planet Venus when at her point of greatest bril- 
liancy, and was in color fiery red, like unto the planet 
Mars, and the tail was about twenty degrees long and 
two degrees wide. For three months it was always to 
be seen in its glory. I afterward learned that it was ar- 
rested in its rapid progress toward the sun and was held 
for about three months by the attraction of Jupiter's 
moons and passed with them around that planet. This 
comet was the theme of learned conversation; old men 
and women said it was a sign of war, and comets always 
came to foretell fearful wars. This comet disappeared 
in September 1860. 


Chapter III. 

The election of Mr. Lincoln as President was the sig- 
nal for withdrawal, and the States South, one by one, 
withdrew from the Unitsd States, Senators and Congress- 
men came home, and with the other States Texas declar- 
ed herself an independent republic and no longer sub- 
ject to the laws of the United States, and as such made 
a call for men able to bear arms. The call was regularly 
made by the Governor through the several county officers, 
and men were regularly commissioned to raise companies 
to defend "Texas." I wa^t to here call attention to the 
fact that under the laws of Texas it would have been 
treason for her people to have refused to respond to this 
legal calling, for the legislative and executive bodies had 
declared us no longer connected with the United States, 
and that government had been formally notified to re- 
move all her possessions from Texas soil. United States 
mails had been discontinued and the Texas papers gave 
the news from sister States under the heading "Foreign 
News." In short, Texas was out of the Union to my 
mind and I must go and fight for Texas or "pull my 
freight" as a traitor, to a foreign country — a thought I 
could never entertain for a moment. Texas, the home 
of my mother, the pride of my father, the guardian of 
my sister and the home of my boyhood, God direct in the 
right, but right or wrong, I fought for Texas, and could 
see no honorable course for Texas men but to stake their 
lives, their liberty, their all for Texas. 

The sincerity and wisdom of her statesmen I have 
never doubted, while for the causes that led to these 


ends I take pleasure in referring you to the words of A. 
H. Stephens, of Georgia, in his book entitled "The War 
Between the States," as well as to the works of others 
both living and dead, not least among whom is that 
eminent Texan who has served his State as a member 
of the Confederate Cabinet and afterward as Senator in 
the United States Congress from Texas, Hon. John H. 

In a recent communication to the Confederate Veteran 
Gen. Clement A. Evans says: 

"The South did not attempt nullification or rebellion 
or any form of unlawful resistance to our government. 
It did not dissolve the Union or even attempt its disso- 
lution: for how may our Union have been lawfully dis- 
solved? By one method alone, and that is bv the agree- 
ment of all the States. Our Union could not have been 
dissolved by one State or by a majority of the States, 
but by all the States; but the South made no call for 
such a measure, preferring to leave each State to act 
for itself according to its pleasure, and accordingly each 
seceding State dissolved its own' connection with the 
Union, and left the government of the Union undissolv- 
ed. The President, the Congress, the courts, the army 
and navy, the constitution and the flag, together with 
every function of government, were left in power and 
place. Suppose the State had resolved to remain in the 
Union, and had marched its army toward Washington 
to resist the inauguration of President Lincoln. That 
would have been rebellion : the overt act would have 
been treasonable ; the failure of it would have made it 
a felonious crime, and its success would have imperiled 
free government on this continent; but no State rebelled, 
no statesman plotted a conspiracy, no soldier committed 
treason. In lawful and dignified measures the South 
sought an honorable separation, and, with equally hon- 
orable acquiescence in its failure, re-entered the Union 
to defend its honor and maintain its glory forever. 


Such is the record of the lawful course of the South in 
separating from the United States, and this procedure 
was followed by a record of the civil administration of 
Confederate States government which will bear the se- 
verest criticism, and has won the rare encomium from a 
noble soul beyond the seas, who said : 

No nation ever rose so fair, 
None fell so free from crime.' ? 


Chapter IV. 

I enlisted for Texas services from the home of my 
parents in Titus Co., Texas, in a company known as the 
Titus Grays, afterwards Company I, 9th Texas Cavalry 
of Ross' Texas Brigade. 

The Titus Greys were mostly youns: men between the 
age of 18 and 25, yet a few old men had enlisted, most of 
them having their sons in the sama company. This 
writer first met with the company in the town of Mt. 
Vernon on the appointed day for marching to the camp 
for instruction. Chas. S. Stuart was elected Captain and 
Laad Miller 1st Lieutenant, James English 2nd Lieuten- 
ant, Buster Haines 3rd Lieutenant. All of the sergeants 
and corporals, not now remembered, were good men 
and filled their station with apparent dignity. In the 
afternoon we were presented with a beautiful flag by 
some of the Mt. Vernon ladies, with some appropriate 
remarks, to which Capt. Stuart responded in a business 
like way. As tactics were unknown, we faced to the 
right in column of twos with guns advanced and received 
orders to march. A few miles out from town we en- 
camped for the night, and one soldier at least was busy 
examining the horses, guns, and knives of the com- 
pany which were varied as the circumstances of the 
many soldiers who composed the company. 

There were rifles, flint and steel, but most of them were 
full stock percussion muzzle-loading machines that had 
been in family use for killing bear, deer and other wild 
animals, which at that time were abundant. Double-bar- 
rel shot guns were the favorite arms, and there were 

the Great war. 15 

many different stamps, from the " London twist" to the 
malleable cast barrel. Not a few pistols were in the com- 
mand, and they were in great demand by the officers, 
who expected to use them as side-arms, but it is worthy 
of notice that each soldier carried a huge knife, usually 
made from an old mill file, shaped by the blacksmith and 
ground according to the fancy of the owner. The horses 
were a fair average of the Texas mustang type, but not 
a few were found in the company that had strains of 
noted blood in their veins. The clothing of the men was 
light and unsuited for hard service, but almost all wore 
long boots made of Texas tanned leather with a large 
flap at the front of the leg to protect the knee. Most of 
our blankets were pieces of carpets taken from floors to 
be used as bedding during the war. 

The march to Brogden Springs was completed in about 
four days without any event now remembered, except an 
effort on the part of our officers to display the company 
as though they were well disciplined soldiers, an effort 
which completely failed. When we reached the town of 
Sherman, then only a village of probably not more than 
four or five hundred inhabitants, who were supplied with 
a one-horse mail and two or three stores, where all kinds 
of merchandise were offered on sale, the company was 
ordered to march through in good order and not break 
ranks under any circumstances until a halt should be 
called, when those who wished could go to town to do 
the needed errands. But behold, when we had made 
our stately march through the populous city there were 
present only about forty of the one-hundred and four- 
teen men who constituted the rank and file of the Titus 
Grays. Captain Stuart was sad, and I do not believe he 
ever got over his sadness, on account of the behavior of 
his company. After a short halt those in line marched to 
the camp which was about ten miles from Sherman and 
encamped. The night was passed without sleep, for ev- 
ery few minutes the noise of some arriving squad was 


echoed for a distance equal to the most powerful voices, 
who came in by twos, by fives, by trios, all apparently 
mellowed on some kind of an intoxicant found in the vil- 
lage. Some were quarreling, some had been racing, 
some had been fighting, some were cursing, some were 
singing, and when we reached Camp Brogden it was 
clear to my mind that all had been drinking. 

The company was encamped on the branch below the 
spring in a beautiful grove, and the first military duty 
ever assigned to the writer was to go on guard with his 
gun and prevent soldiers from watering their horses 
above a certain line where water was taken for camp use. 
I had great difficulty in performing the duty, as citizens 
of the country and visitors seemed unable to realize that 
while in our camp they were subject to the same water 
restrictions as the soldiers. They would ride into the 
water and inform us that we had nothing to do with them 
and I have no doubt that serious troubles would have 
been the result if it had not been that our guns were not 
allowed to be loaded. One member of the company 
emphasized his order to let no man ride into the water 
with the butt of his gun on the head of an offender, and 
after this we had less trouble. 

Other companies were encamped near by when we 
arrived, and almost all the men had some peculiar stripe 
or badge which was soon known as the company uni- 
form. I will here say that our company was known by 
a blue stripe on the shoulders of our jackets, Captain 
Duncan's company had a black stripe, Captain Hart's 
had yellow and others had red. 

Our time was occupied in drilling and the training of 
our horses in single companies until all the companies 
were in camp and the field officers elected. W. B. Sims 
was elected Colonel. He was a large man and of fine 
appearance and had a voice equal to the modern fog 
horn. Quail was elected Lieu tenant-Colonel. He was 
not so large as Ool. Sims, but what he lacked in stature 



Was more than made up in grace. He was the finest 
appearing horseman I had then ever beheld ; he was the 
military man of the regiment, and best in drill. Major N. 
B. Towne was also a fine looking officer and commanded 
greatest respect among the soldiers. He rode a pided 
horse, about the best horse in the regiment. Dr James 
Robertson was appointed surgeon, he being a private of 
Stuart's company, a man of great skill, as was after- 
ward shown. Dr. Prewitt, also of Stuart's company, 
was made Assistant Surgeon and D. W. Jones, of the 
same company, was appointed Adjutant, after which the 
Captains met and drew lots for their position in regiment- 
al line with the following result: 

Capt. T. G. Berry, Company A. Tarrant County. 

Sid. Smith, 
J. E. McCool, 
M. J. Brinson, 
J. C. Hart, 
M. E. Duncan, 
L. D. King, 
J. D. Wright, 
Chas. Stuart, 

B. Fannin 

C. Grayson 

D. Tarrant 

E. Red River 

F. Titus 

G. Hopkins 
H. Lamar 
I. Titus 








J. H. Williams, Co. K. Hunt and Hopkins Counties. 

W. B. Sims was appointed Quartermaster and Capt. J. 
D. Wright was made Commissary. 

Lieutenant E. L. Dohoney was elected to succeed 
Capt. Wright and commanded company H. 

After the election of officers and the formation of the 
regiment which, I think, was on October 14th, 1860 (we 
had been previously sworn into the State service, date 
not remembered, but I think we served the State about 
three months before we were mustered into the Confed- 
erate service), we were reviewed by Colonel Sims, who 
made us a speech in which he told us "we were soldiers 
enlisted for the war, and from that day we were to re- 
gard war, civil war, as our profession, and in life it is 
the duty of every man to study, to understand his profes- 


sion, and that his purpose would be to make us effective 
soldiers;" a purpose he evidently carried out to the 
letter, for I do not believe Col. Sims ever thought of 
anything else but war. While he commanded the regi- 
ment his commands were positive, his discipline firm, yet 
his nature was noble, lovable and brave. He was a born 
commander among men and, no doubt, would have 
scored his name high in rank but for his early disabili- 

After the regiment was formed we were drilled mostly 
in battallions, Lieutenant- Colonel Quail commanding the 
first and Major Towne the second, with Col. Sims al- 
ways on the field to note the progress of his young pro- 
fessionals, and it was during this schooling that I first 
heard of trial by court martial. I do not remember the 
names of the court, but recollect that Lieutenant Miller 
was a member from company I. The trial was at Col. 
Sims' headquarters tent and the case, as I remember it, 
was of some poor fellow who had stolen something, prob- 
ably clothing or bedding, from members of his company. 
The charge was formally proven, the judgment of the 
court was "guilty" and the penalty was that he be dis- 
honorably discharged and to the music of the fife and , 
drum marched through all the camps to the outer guard 
line, where he was to receive his belongings and depart, 
never to return. The order was carried out to the letter, 
and never before had I seen a man so debased. His face 
was covered with that shame that cannot be transfered 
to this paper. It was hideous ; it bespoke that he was 
even too low in manhood's scale to be killed by the 
country's enemy. I never knew his name or what be- 
came of him only this I know "He was drummed out of 
the camp." There was also another case but whether it 
was tried as in the court martial I do not recollect, but 
think it was, the crime as charged, all that I remember 
is that he was hanged to a tree until he was dead and no ' 
tears were shed at his burial. His crime I think, was 


committed outside of our lines and citizens were the wit- 
nesses, but he, a soldier, was tried and executed in our 
camps. He was called Major Bell, and, I remember, 
claimed to be "Old Montgomery of Kansas," a noted 
drill master. These events of discipline that secured in 
my memory had a great influence on the command. Dis- 
grace and death were the penalties, the former being 
considered most severe. 


Chapter v. 

As time glided by, we soon discovered that Captain 
Duncan of company F rode a very fine horse, as black as 
a crow and his (Duncan's,) company claimed he was the 
fastest horse in the command. Our Captain Stuart, of 
company I, also rode a very fine and fleet horse that we, 
of companv I, considered the fastest on earth and were 
longing for the day when our bay could get a chance at 
their black to show what he could do with him on a 
running match, but Captain Duncan, seemed uninclined 
to run his horse and Capt. Stuart was very religious and 
would not allow betting even on his own horse. Com- 
pany H gave us no peace but tantalized us on every 
occasion with the superior breeding and fleetness of 
their horse, while we well knew that the world knew 
no finer horse than our bay. So we just could not 
stand it; we could not bet and run our horse and they 
would not run for fun. It so happened that each of the 
captains had a large silver spur which were just alike, 
and we concluded this ought to be the stake. Each would 
have freely given his spur to match the other, but we 
could not allow such an opportunity to pass without try- 
ing the speed of the horses. Our best judges concluded 
that our horse was the better at three-fourths of a mile, 
and they thought that theirs would do better at one mile 
or more, and much caviling was the result. Finally our 
horse racer, an old man who had been considerably stir- 
red by their constant bullying, publicly declared that 
"Stuart's bay horse can beat Duncan's black any day 
the sun shines at any place on Texas soil, any distance 


from one to one thousand miles," and by way of empha- 
sizing his speech, turned on a string of oaths that ap- 
parently settled the matter beyond dispute. 

Then they came at us. Next Saturday the day, one 
mile the distance, the sand bar opposite the camp the 
place; each horse to carry such rider as his friends se- 
lected. When the race was made it was the event of the 
camp and the betting was wonderful and high. When 
Saturday came, at the appointed hour, the sand bar was 
measured and the people were lined up on each side of 
the imaginary track by thousands. There were bets on 
six hundred yards, judges and polls at the half mile, at 
three-quarters, at seven- eights and lastly at one mile; 
the race for the spur. Captain Stuart was not present 
and the only notice he appeared to take of the matter was 
when we started with his horse he spoke to the sergeant 
with some interest, saying, "Orderly, if you run my horse 
over three-quarters you had better put a light rider on 
him," then turned into his tent. 

When we got to the river, four or five miles, company 
H was there, the ground measured and polls established 
at the several stations along the line. The black was 
ridden by an Indian boy and I was to ride the bay. 

We were stripped and mounted and the Indian got the 
word on me. The bay was in fine condition and of such 
high mettle as to be unmanagable, but we finally got off 
after much worry to my horse. The Indian got a few 
feet the start, but I passed him at the quarter, was a full 
lenth ahead at six hundred yards and twenty feet ahead 
at three-quarters, but as I had never been through the 
course I mistook the seven -eighths pole for last and gave 
my horse a pull, and as he was failing any way the black 
horse passed him and went out a full length ahead, 
and I lost the Captain's spur. I felt so bad over if that it 
is not yet pleasant for me to think of it, for I surely rode 
the best horse. Still if you find a member of company H 
yet alive I believe he will crow over their victory. 


Shortly after this we were mustered into the Confed- 
erate service by Col. W. C. Young, Oct. 14, 1861, and 
took up the line of march for the seat of war, crossing 
Red River near where Denison now stands. 

The next camp of note was at Boggy Depot, where we 
spent the night. Boggy Depot is situated on Boggy 
Creek and was a noted trading point where many trink- 
ets and notions were sold by the Indians. The soldiers 
of the regiment bought quite a lot of these gaudy things 
and on the march next day presented all the colors of 
the rainbow in fringes, handkerchiefs, shawls, etc. 

From this point Captain Whaley was sent in advance 
to procure subsistence for the men and horses, and this 
writer was one of the detail to go with him. At Lamb's 
Gap Capt. Whaley was making a purchase of a hog for 
meat from an Indian who spoke but very little of the lan- 
guage. About all I could make out was that the hog 
was big and fat and wild and that he, the seller, could 
go to the mountains and kill him, the hog, for the price 
named . The trade was made and the Indian, mounted 
on his pony, with his six shooter without the revolving 
apparatus, set out for the mountain and brought the hog 
in, and, behold, when the hog was delivered he was an 
old woods sow in a very short time of bringing pigs. 

I remember no incident worthy of note from this camp 
to North Fork Town. While the regiment was camped 
here Capt. Whatley with his same squad was some ten 
miles further up the river gathering up supplies. We 
were in camp when a small negro Indian boy on a horse 
rode up. After some conversation with Capt. Whaley 
he rode away at a gallop, uttering a curious scream, ter- 
minating in something resembling the gobbling of a tur- 
key, which the Captain said was the Indian war-whoop, 
and meant mischief to us. We were encamped near a 
building called a Mission, and stood guard over our 
horses, which were kept saddled for fight or flight, while 
the Indians in every direction appeared to be in great 


excitement, and we afterward learned that a detachment 
left that night to join Chief Hapothlehola, who with his 
braves was further up the river pressing General Cooper 
who commanded the Confederate Indian forces. Early 
next morning we rejoined our command. 

During our absence a large detachment, in fact nearly 
the whole regiment, except a strong wagon guard, that 
was left in charge of the baggage, had started on a 
forced march up the river to reinforce Gen. Cooper who 
was hard pressed by the yankees and their Indian allies, 
under an old chief named Hapothlehola, known among 
our allies as "Gouge." 

Gouge had once been a great warrior of the Creek 
Nation and was at enmity with the family of Mcintosh, 
the reigning chief, and in order to revenge his hatred 
had assembled all the least civilized of his own tribe* 
together with allies from other tribes, and espoused the 
cause of our common enemy with his Seminoles. (The 
word Seminole in the Creek tongue means wild.) Gen. 
Cooper in command of some Choctaws, Chickasaws, 
Creeks and Cherokees was hard pressed by Gouge and 
the Seminoles and their allies. 

We joined the detachment about day light in the 
morning while they were on a rapid march and without 
a halt each man fell into his respective company. The 
march was long and tiresome, only a short halt was 
made about noon to eat the small ration and refill the 
canteens with water. Many times during the march we 
were forced to cross streams in one single narrow path 
that probably had been made by buffalo and other wild 
animals, which caused considerable delay. The dis- 
tance was probably 70 or 75 miles, and it was late at 
night before we were with Cooper. The last ten miles 
probably was made after dark. Gen. Cooper's Indians 
received us with a great joy as we marched through 
their camp and fired us a grand salute, which we re- 
turned with about the same unmilitary regularity. 


After passing through the camps we were encamped for 
the remainder of the night. I afterward learned that 
Gen. Cooper had the detachment marched through his 
camp to inspire greater confidence among his braves, 
most of whom were Indians, one company alone whites, 
Capt. Otis G. Welch commanding, from Texas, and was 
acting as Cooper's Escort. 

I have neglected one item which may be of interest to 
the reader which I will now speak of as memory presents 
it to my view. At the time we were mustered into the ser- 
vice of the Confederate States as each man had furnish- 
ed his own equipment they were all inspected and val- 
ued, and we were to be paid for them according to that 
valuation. My horse was a large black gelding, and the 
valuation of my effects was as follows : 

1 horse $ 100 00 

1 Saddle, rawhide skeleton, 25 00 

Saddlebags, :. 4 00 

2 blankets, (1 fine) 7 00 

1 bridle, , 2 00 

1 gun, common double barrel shot gun, 25 00 

Underclothing, 4 shirts, 4 drawers 8 00 

Coat and pants, 16 00 

Boots, 6 00 

Canteen, cup, knife, belt and etc 3 00 

Total $ 186 00 

This total of $186.00 I give you as a fair average of the 
outfit of the private Texas cavalryman. These figures 
are taken from memory, but are substantially correct. 

Our first day here was a novel and busy one, for while 
our horses took a short and much needed rest ten days 
rations of raw beef, flour and corn meal were issued and 
we were ordered to cook them up for a march. How 
shall we cook them was the question, as all our kettles, 
pans and Ovens were far away with the wagons we had 
left behind. Major Rose said we were then novices in 
the art of ration making, and, after many years, this 


writer acknowledges he is still a novice under the same 
conditions. The only advantage that a life of experi- 
ence has given me that would improve my first ten days 
rations of meal and flour is that then the meal was made 
up ancl cooked separate and was bad to crumble, while 
the flour was sad and stony when made into bread ; now 
I have learned to mix the meal and flour together, by 
which means these two great faults would in a measure be 
overcome. But to resume; we built fires on the rocks, 
and after brushing away the ashes made a cake of bread 
baked on one side and dried on the other. Some made 
ash cakes and roasted them in the ashe.s, some got rocks 
and set them before the fire after the manner of Johnie 
cakes, and many more devices were used. A good, nice 
stick would do with the flour dough, but with the meal 
it would not answer for lack of cohesion. During the 
day and early night the rations were all cooked, after a 
manner, and the remainder of the night was spent in 
watching our Indian friends prepare for battle in a war 

Many people seem to think the Indian war dance a 
frivolous affair; but from my observation it is really a 
very serious ceremony, that is just as necessary for the 
Indian before his battle for life or death as is prayer for 
the Christian on like occasion. 

Going over among the Indians I found that they were 
gathering together for the dance, and when they had 
assembled a spokesman arose and in a very earnest 
manner spoke some words to his braves in his native 
tongue, they giving him the most profound attention. I 
did not understand his language, but afterward learned 
from an Indian that his speech in substance was about 
as follow s : 

"Friends, Hapothlehola, one of our race who has been 
honored and loved by his people, has become mad with 
his brothers and has gathered to him all the wild tribes 
and has marched them to our homes. We offered to 


meet him as a friend and brother, but he turned his back 
to us, then we sent him a white flag by our young warrior 
and he painted it red, a sign of war, and sent us this. 
(Here he displayed a huge club shaped like a chicken's 
head, with blood and hair in its bill.) This scene was 
met with screams and gobbles which lasted for some 
minutes, when a few guns were fired and silence was 
restored and the speaker went on: "What does this 
mean? Ask the old men who have lived beyond the 
"Great Water" and they will tell you it means war! It 

means that they will kill our children, it means that they 
will burn our houses, it means they will take away our 
squaws, it means they will drive off our cattle; and 
when we have grown weak for want of food they will 
hunt us down in the mountains and scalp us like wolves." 
(Here the speaker was again drowned in a series of 

The glimmer of the low campfires made the painted 
bodies of the Indians look like demons rising from the 
infernal regions. This lasted probably twenty minutes 
and was finally brought to a quiet with renewed gobbles, 
when the orator resumed: "Friends, will you swear be- 
fore the Great Spirit that you will defend your own, 
even though your life-blood should be given? Will you 
swear that you will never take ease again until the last 
of those who seek to do us harm are driven over the 
border? Then let us paint our faces, a sign that we look 
no more upon the squaw until her enemies are no more; 
then will our little ones bask in the shade on the banks 
of their brooks, then will the squaw know that we are 
no cowards and will have no fears, for she will be kept 
a wife of her people by the arms of our braves." At 
this juncture a ring was filled with painted Indians, all 
marching in a side- like manner, stepping high and fast, 
while they chanted a strange song. Others soon joined 
them, and thus was the time passed until I had to look 
to my last ashcake which was burnt beyond recognition, 


but it went into the bag and we ate it. Some corn had 
also been issued to us which we were ordered to shell 
and place in a sack to be carried for our horses. Thus 
a busy day and night was spent in making ready for a 
heavy march, which we knew lay before us, for Gen. 
Cooper's Indian scouts had reported that the enemy had 
broke camp and was retreating towards the northwest. 
At an early hour on the following morning the bugle 
sounded and the regiment fell into line, each man hav- 
ing strapped to his saddle, his ten day's rations and 
about one peck of shelled corn, besides blankets and 
forty loads of shot and powder for his arms, canteen, 
cup, etc. Lieutenant Colonel Quail was in command 
and while, in line he told us that we were to march after 
the enemy until overtaken and beaten, which would be 
in a wild and unsettled country and explained to us the 
great importance of economizing our rations for our- 
selves and horses, as our efficiency depended altogether 
on what we then carried. He also caused a blue and a 
red string to be issued to each man to be tied around 
his left arm, which he explained was a badge to be worn 
by our allies, both white and Indians, and that the op- 
posing forces would wear a piece of a corn shuck, either 
plaited in his hair, or otherwise connected with his head 
dress, and that we should know all such to be enemies, 
and further to let no Indian or white man pass us with- 
out the badge, and impressed it upon us as of life and 
death importance. 

While in line Cooper's Indian warrier were marched 
by us in columns of two, first Mcintosh at the head of 
the Creeks, a large regiment, I suppose 1300; then the 
Choctaws and Chickesaws, about 500; then Captain 
Welch's company of Texans, about 100, and last, 9th 
Texas Cavalry, about 800 were commanded by Colonel 
Quail and Major Towne. Col. Sims, as I recollect, was 
in charge of the train guard, left at Northfork town, to 
proceed to a given point on the Arkansaw river and 
await our return. The Indian warriors, as I noticed 


were well supplied with rations, and rode small ponies 
and were dressed in a garb ranging from a common 
gent's suit to a breech clout and blanket, most of the full 
bloods wore only the latter, their faces were painted in 
such a manner that many of them were frightful to 
even look upon, there seemed to be no particular design 
in the manner of their painting, but each one seemed to 
have been painted according to the fancy of the artist 
but the most common way of painting appeared to 
be about three lines of deep red from the edge of the 
hair down the forehead and met between the eyes, then 
a large red spot on either cheek that would resemble the 
outline picture of the sun with spangles, all of red, 
sometimes black spots, too, were painted and sometimes 
the eyes were made red, and the mouth outlined to each 
ear and some were painted black down to the eyes, 
then the balance of the face red, and many hideous 
looking faces told of desperate purposes, but if any of 
them bespoke any rank or had special meaning I failed 
to learn them. Some had head coverings that were the 
skins from the heads of buffalo, bear, panthers, cougars, 
calves, etc., and quite a number wore the horns taken 
off with the hide of buffalo, and otners wore no head 
covering, only a single feather like it might be plucked 
from the tail of a turkey, eagle, buzzard, or anything 
else that the wearer might fancy. I noticed one old 
warrior on foot who carried a long full stock rifle, he 
wore leggings and mockasins in addition to his breech 
clout and a feather about four feet long that had been 
taken from the tail of a peafowl was his complete war- 
drobe. He only spoke one word in English and that 
was, No! We called him "Old Pap" and he answered 
to the name with his positive No ! to anything that was 
spoken to him. There were quite a number of squaws 
that were among the warriors in camps but how they 

traveled and when, I never learned the Indians. No 
matter how full or scant his apparel was sure to have 
the badge of red and blue en his arm. Their arms were 


as varied as their apparel and were old rifle, guns and 
bows and arrows mostly, and in this motleyed assembly 
we marched upon the enemy, a force I suppose, all toll, 
would number from 2500 to 2800 men. 


Chapter VI. 

Col. Quail placed a guard on our flanks and we moved 
out about six or eight miles and we came upon their 
vacated camps and Captain Stuart and a part of his 
company were sent out to examine the vacated camp and 
report, in order to estimate the strength and equipage of 
the enemy and this writer thus being favored, had an 
opportunity of exploring the camp and in a measure 
gratifying the curious that had so great a hold upon 

There were signs of wagons, quite a number of ponies 
and cattle in huge droves, and more than 2,500 fires had 
been built on either side of the creek for more than a 
mile of its course, there were signs of tents and bones of 
animals, but the camp had been so completely burned 
over that it was very difficult to determine their trail, 
for each wagon had apparently selected its own road 
through the grass and the fire had almost obliterated 
every trace of the vehicles in many places, but we 
found that they had moved in a Northwest direction and 
their trail sign could be discovered for a distance of 
several miles in width, and in this scattering manner 
they had moved for several days, probably for fifty 
miles, before they appeared to consolidate in the trail, 
which we, on the second or third day out, found to be 
well beaten and plainly marked, and at intervals we 
found the fires while yet burning, appearing to have 
been left a few hours. The Videtts of the enemy were 
nearly always to be seen in front to the right or left and 


occasionally in the rear, as we marched. Mr. Rose, in 
his book, says we sighted their camp and fought them 
on the fourth day out, but to the best of my recollection 
it was the ninth or tenth day out. We crossed creeks 
and riverlets and the Indians gave us the names of the 
larger ones, among others, I remember Deep Fork, Salt 
Creek and Stinking Fork of the Arkansaw River, and 
the country became more broken and huge mountains 
could be seen in the distance to the left and in front, 
and the supply of bread had become scarce when I first 
realized my extreme hunger, when Thos. English, a 
member of Capt. Stuart's company, remarked that he 
could eat a piece of a dead dog, which were plentiful on 
the trail, having been killed a time sufficient to swell 
them and gave the appearance of fine condition of fat. 
Within the next twenty-four hours which remark was 
sanctioned by almost all who heard it. From that 
moment on I was hungry. I was suffering. I was ex- 
tremely hungry. 

On one evening a cow had got away from the enemy 
and was coming back the trail and was immediately 
butchered but did not much more than sharpen our ap- 
petites and the last of the bread was exhausted. The 
Indians, we noticed had small sacks of some parched 
meal that they called Arbusca. I succeeded in getting 
a small package, probably a gill for a quarter of a dol- 
lar, and I used it as directed, that is stirred about a 
spoonful into a pint of water and drank it. It was 
splendid. I afterwards learned that it was made of corn 
parched and ground, mixed with a wild herb root called 
chuck-a-way and sweetened, and by the aid of such 
things as we could gather we managed to live but our 
hunger was most unbearable. We halted on the banks af- 
ter crossing the Arkansaw river and upon looking around 
under some Burr oak trees, we found a lot of acorns. 

They eat well and we replenished our provision store to 
the full extent of the supply — probably five or six to the 
man — and not knowing the effect of such food we munched 



from the supply in our pockets on the march until the 
chase and battle, which occurred later that evening. 
I have neglected to mention that during the march for 
the past few days that a Vidette, most always to be 
seen on our left flank had, several times been the occa- 
sion of a lively chase and many had been the shots fired 
at him and his horse. I had more than once chased him 
only to be easily left, which was mortifying to my pride 
for I rode a horse "Old Napoleon" that to my mind was 
equal to the best and I could scarce realize that any 
living man could ride a living horse away from me when 
I was mounted on "Old Pole" but that scout could 
leave me with apparent ease, but there seemed to me 
each time for chase a reason why "Old Pole" was left 
which I firmly believed would not occur again. The 
horse was white, very white, and the rider appeared to 
be small and without beard and of a light complexion, 
and carried arms that were long range. Both rider and 
horse appeared to be proof against any arms that we 
carried, and our superstition had led us to believe he 
was an enchantment and it was shared alike with our 
Indian allies. The white horse was the subject of a 
large part of our conversation and each of us believed 
that he had fired the gun that reasonably would have 
killed him, but he was still seen this time in front. And 
while yet munching at our acorns and resting our 
horses the scouts reported the village of the enemy only 
six or eight miles distant, and Colonel Quail began im- 
mediate preparations for his capture. Captain Stuart 
was placed in command of the advance and called for 
his company to forward with a renewed energy. Each 
man was thrilled for we felt the long chase would have 
come to an issue and we all felt that victory was ours. 
Major Rose, in his work, explains the plans of attack, 
but I was so carried away with the thought of Captain 

Stuart's bay horse. I had no doubt but he would catch 
the Gray and I felt like "Old Pole" would be a very 
close second, and with these thoughts uppermost in my 


mind I did not know or care how the others were dis- 
posed of, for my aim in the battle was to kill or capture 
the white horse and his famed rider. I never looked for 
anything but Captain Stuart and his company. We 
rode out on the high prairie and just south of east of 
our position and in plain view quietly stood the white 
horse and his ever alert rider mounted. On either side 
of the Vidette at a distance of 400 or 600 yards there 
were some small creeks with lower lands on which there 
was some timber, the tops of which could be seen for 
four or five miles, where the prairie appeared to be shut 
in by the streams coming together, forming a landscape 
view that would be represented by a sharp letter V and 
about midway between the two projecting prongs. 

The company was first ordered front into line and 
from this position could see the smoke as it arose from 
the camp of the enemy along both streams to the left 
and to the right, and straight in front at about 600 
yards distance was the only living object that I saw 
who had, while we were performing said manouver, set 
the grass on fire. This was about 3 o'clock, Nov. 19th, 
1861. Captain Stuart then ordered an advance, with 
eyes set on the gray horse the soldiers could not be held 
back with a line, but like beasts of prey they flew at 
the Vidette, each man hoping to get within range before 
he reached cover. Away we went, my heart swelled 
that old Pole was still kept a close second to Captain 
Stuart's noted bay. We soon had him on the run and 
we reserved our fire hoping to get him, though we fol- 
lowed him to his den. By some means as if by magic 
he managed to fire the prairie several times while on the 
run, which was a long one, for the Vidette rode for the 
juncture of the two creeks — and we close after him. 
When within 40 or 50 yards we received a volley of 
balls and arrows that were discharged by a hidden ene- 
my who had concealed themselves behind the bank, but 
from our close proximity we saw them when they raised 
to fire upon us. Captain Stuart discharged his pistol 


that he carried in his hand and reigned up his horse 
with the command of "left into line" and as the com- 
pany dashed into line each man discharged his piece into 
the half hidden ranks of the Indians. The company 
was rapidly and nicely forming with a good effect when 
on the extreme left of the line Lieutenant English called 
to those on the left to aim to the left as the Indians were 
now enfilading our line with a seven fire. Captain 
Stuart carried one of those peculiar pistols that were so 
constructed that their use required the use of three fin- 
gers, the second and third fingers were used to cock the 
pistol and the first, which was used to shoot by pulling 
the trigger as with an ordinary pistol, and while Captain 
Stuart was firing he would raise the muzzle of the pistol 
up and fire as his arm was on a downward movement, 
and while his hand was raised after cocking his pistol, 
he was struck in the forehead by a large ball that 
passed out a little to the left of the center of the back of 
his head, and he made an unusual noise and I looked 
and he was falling forward and to the right of his horse, . 
which he held well in gather with the left hand, firmly * 
holding the bridle when the body fell, it so turned that 
the hand raised with the pistol fell across the front of 
the saddle and the force of the grip discharged the 
pistol and the ball passed very close to my face, "fear- 
ful close." The ball that killed him on passing out of 
his head threw a large wad of his brain upon the sleeve 
and collar of my coat. 

One of our Lieutenants, seeing the rapid movements 
of the enemy, ordered us to retreat and load as retreat- 
ing, an order that was obeyed with some sulliness, and 
as soon as loaded our guns were immediately discharged 
upon our pursuing enemy who were peppering us with a 
deadly aim, aided by the glare of the light from the 
burning prairie as set by their famed scout. It was 
about sundown when we first fired into their camp, and 
dark soon aided them to keep concealed, and by the 
reason of the firelight they continued the fight until late 


at night, we disputing every inch of the ground for 
more than two miles, and I was getting enough of it and 
beginning to wonder where the regiment was, when all 
as a flash of electricity the prairie was in a long, smooth 
line of fire from the regiment, who had, by separating 
and taking' a part of our Indian force with each division, 
had as completely ambushed the Indians as they had 
ambushed Stuart's company on the beginning of the 
fight. A loud roar told us of our relief and we thought 
thank "God" we had passed through the line and now 
we had nothing to do but look on. The fight was very 
severe for only a short time, when the yell of our 
Chocktaws and Chickesaws, whom we had by this time 
learned to distinguish, told us of the victory. The 
route was complete and was only followed to the limits 
of skylighting from the prairie fire now burning furious- 
ly in all directions. The fight was called off, our regi- 
ment to the call of the bugle and the Indians to a pe- 
culiar whoop known to themselves. 

We encamped for the remainder of the night in line, 
each man in arms while a strong chain guard kept 
watch, while the regiment slept. 


Chapter VII. 

The earliest signs of approaching daylight found us 

ready to renew the battle but as light appeared our 
advance found the enemy gone. He had utilized the 
remainder of the night in a rapid but noiseless retreat 
and as before there was no trail to be followed, for when 
they slip off no two of them appear to travel the same 
trail. But the fruits of our engagement was to be seen 
in their deserted camp. There were about twenty 
wagons, mostly loaded with Indian plunder, consisting 
of hides of animals used for bedding, and many curious 
things that to me were without name or value and were 
all very dirty. There was one wagon loaded with pro- 
visions, but I was told had all been poisoned before they 
left it and a strong guard was placed in charge of it to 
prevent the men from eating before it could be burned. 
I know it was burned in the presence of starving men. 
The wagons were of modern make and in good condi- 
tion, for I remember it was here I saw my first striped 
thimble skinned wagons. Besides these wagons there 
were large herds of stock and we soon had plenty of 
beef without bread or salt, and horses without number 
were gathered but poor and in a starving condition. 
We burned all the wagons and most of the plunder, 
but some of the soldiers appropriated a lot of Buffalo, 
Bear and Wolf hides that had been prepared and 
used for bedding. And in addition there were taken 
quite a lot of prisoners who were duly turned over to their 
own race, and we gathered up the wounded and dressed 
their wounds and buried our dead among the rest. Our 
beloved Captain Stuart, who had been regarded by his 


company much like a child regards its father, and the 
dee ^sorrow we felt for him will never be expressed in 
words on paper. I will only say our greatest hopes 
were buried with him. 

It was a very difficult matter to go over the whole 
field and find all the dead but as several of us had seen 
the Captain fall it was our special lot to bury him, and 
we found him, but not before he had been seen by the 
enemy, for he fell within one hundred yards of their 
camp. His body was striped but he was not scalped, 
which led me to believe that his body had been found 
only by the camp squaws, for the warriors would have 
scalped the body — all the others of our dead were 
scalped. At the time of his death Captain Stuart had 
in his pockets some Burr Oak acorns, as I have before 
stated, and these acorns were arranged in a line upon 
his naked body — more like the work of children at play 
than the acts of warfare. We wrapped him in a blanket 
and placed the body on a horse and conveyed it several 
miles from the spot where he fell and under cover of the 
darkness we made a grave with only our hack knives 
and neatly wrapped in a blanket with a vault covered 
with flat stones, we placed the body and filled the grave, 
after which we burned some brush upon the place to 
hide all signs of a grave where we left him. Our losses 
in this engagement were several, but their names and 
company were not known to me, some we found had 
been tortured to death with fire, others shot, and we had 
several wounded, one or two severely. They were 
moved by means of a horse litter, one poor fellow I 
recollect that had his jaw broken and if there ever was 
a time when a man needed his jaw it was when we had 
only tough beef, and no way to cook it but to broil, but 
we managed to make a broth for thia man and he lived 
for years after the war. 

On the morning of the 21st we started to our wagon 
train, then camped on Arkansaw river not far above Ft. 
Gibson. Our course lay in an santa eastern direction 


and down the river there was no road or trail and the 
principal trouble was crossings on the creeks, etc. We 
camped on Deep Fork in a nice valley, and it was here 
that I first remember the great scorge, the measles, we 
had a case in our mess, his name was Monroe King, and 
as the night was a wet one, I well remember the tent we 
made him of a single blanket pegged down over him to 
protect him from the storm. He is now dead. 

On the following day we continued our journey down 
the river and as well as I now recollect it was on the 
second or third day of our travels that We came to the 
first settlement, but we found no person on the place 
and no living animal, but on riding into the little en- 
closure we noticed that the little field had been culti- 
vated in wheat, and in a small crib the crop had been 
housed in the sheaf, the stubble had been cut very 
high and bundles were very long which was 
evidence of the great heighth of the grain. It 
must have been five feet or more tall when growing. 
A guard was placed around the little crib and a sergeant 
at once proceeded to issue the grain to the men, a small 
handful to each man, who without further ceremony, 
proceeded to rub out the grain and eat it raw. It tasted 
fine, for it was the only bread we had eaten for four 
or five days. 

The next encampment that I recollect was when we 
found plenty of cattle and goats and we butchered a 
plentiful supply that only wanted salt to satisfy our 
great hunger. On the following morning each man was 
ordered to carry a ration for the next night, and we 
each carried a good sized chunk of broiled meat on the 
march, which was continued down the river, most of the 
time near its banks. The march was continued until 
about 3 o'clock in the evening, when a halt was called, 
and we were ordered to eat our food, which we devoured 
with great relish. About the hour of starting, I first 
learned that our wagons were encamped only a short 
distance down the river, and a quickened march soon 


brought us in sight of the long wished encampment, 
where we were to again be filled. I was hungry, and it 
appeared to be the want of salt that gave me the great- 
est annoyance. On reaching the camp we found that 
our comrades had prepared for us. A great heap of 
biscuits lay on the pan and the skillet was heaped with 
good brown slices of mess pork, but to my dismay each 
man was ordered to eat onlv one biscuit with one slice 
of meat, then feed his horse five ears of corn and after 
he had eaten to water him at the river about 300 yards 
distant, then he could have the second and to feed and 
water as before. This order, I suppose, was a precau- 
tion to prevent us and our horses froui over- eating. A 
wise precaution it must have been, when I remember 
that the biscuits were large and each man soaked his 
bread well in the salted grease and proceeded to eat 
with that relish that experience only could realize. 
There were throngs of men and horses going and re- 
turning from the water which was kept up to far into 
the night, this writer making three trips, each time de- 
vouring his allotted ration and on the fourth biscuit, I 
had enough, thank God. I had enough once more, and 
on the following day no serious results are remembered, 
but we rested, we slept, we ate and slept again, thus 
was ended our first soldier experience on an Indian 
campaign. We were absent from our train twenty one 
days, to the best of my memory. We were greatly 
fatigued and our horses in bad shape, the men mostly 
in fair health but a few cases of that dreadful scorge 
''measles" had been reported, a disease which after- 
wards proved very destructive to the regiment. 

We had a large surplus of Indian ponies that had 
been brought in from the capture and I think that each 
soldier named his captured pony Gouge, in honor to his 
former associations. 

After we reached the wagons and had filled up we 
learned that our Indians would celebrate the victory 
with a scalp dance and I went to see them. At their 


camp they had a circle, in the center of which was 
planted a bush with a great number of limbs, and on 
these limbs were fastened the scalps taken in the battle. 
The usual war whoop was sounded and the same solemn 
chant and the dancers with paint and arms were per- 
forming various quicksteps, "much like a recruit mark- 
ing time," but were beating slowly around the ring. 
When at a given signal a warrior was seen to jump 
into the ring with knife and hatchet in his hands. He 
made many fierce high jumps as though expecting an 
enemy, who soon made his appearance on opposite 
side of the ring, making the same demonstrations, ap- 
parently not seeing each other, while the others kept 
up the chant and march. When they first saw each 
other they played the cat and tried to slip on each 
other, when, after a time at this, one made a dash for 
the other and a high clear jump he is out of the way, 
and before a recovery they leap at each other like game 
chicks for a period of several minutes, when finally one 
will fall while the other stands proudly over his victim 
waving high above his head a knife and bends down 
and with a quick movement of the arm apparently he 
takes off his scalp amid a deafening, howling roar that 
I cannot describe. 

Our camp at this place was in the neighborhood of 
some good farms and forage for our horses was in great 
plenty and we rested and ate and drank of this great 
bounty. And it was no great while until we again 
wished for more active life. Within a few days we 
were moved to Ft. Gibson and an election was held for 
a captain. Lieutenant James English was elected cap- 
tain, an honor which I think was justly merited, as it 
was to his keen perception and great presence of mind 
that the company had made such a good fight at Round 

While at Ft. Gibson the measles was a terror in the 
regiment and many were sick and the burial service was 
of daily occurrence. 


Chapter VIII. 

Fort Gibson was situated at the juncture of Grand 
river with the waters of the Arkansaw river, and is 
beautifully situated on the north and east banks of the 
two above named rivers, and consisted of a beautiful 
square, surrounded with small wooden buildings and at 
the time of which I write the only armament consisted 
of two black houses made of logs and situated at oppo- 
site corners of the square, one at the northwest and 
the other on the southeast corners. Each was made of 
nice hewn logs and were about 14 feet square, to a 
heighth of about 8 feet the walls became larger on 
all sides, were set out about three feet on each side, 
making the upper rooms about 20 feet square. They 
were closely connected between the logs and no opening 
with the exception of one small door made thick and 
heavy, there were port holes chiseled in the walls large 
enough to contain the muzzles of the guns and so cut 
that the guns could be brought to bear on any place 
facing that side of the house. Fort Gibson is about the 
line connecting the Creek and Cherokee nations. Quite 
a number of Cherokees lived in or about the Fort, most 
of them were mixed blooded people and were well edu- 
cated, and many of them seemed to be wealthy, and 
their generosity was never surpassed by any people, es- 
pecially in the care of our sick. 

Gen. Cooper's command was encamped a few miles 
up the river on the Verdigris river ih the Cherokee Na- 
tion and about this time the enemy was again on the 
hostile move, and it was about this time I first saw the 
regiment of Col. Stanwats, a fine looking body of men. 


I was told they were Indian blood, but if they differed 
from any other regiment in soldier appearance I could 
not detect it. So different were they from other Indian 
soldiers that I had met. Col. Drue also had a regiment 
of Cherokee Indians which were unlike Stanwats* 
regiment, as they all appeared to be full bloods, or as 
the Indians would say, tubbus. It was only a few days 
until we again started out to meet Hopothleholu at this 
time reinforced with the regiments of Stanwaitus and 
Drue. We met and passed these regiments daily on the 
march up the Arkansaw and across the Verdigris and in 
due time were joined with Gen. Cooper, who encamped 
his forces on the night of Dec. 8th, near the village of 
the enemy, who was again in great force. During the 
night, some communications were passed between the 
opposing forces, as I understood, with a view to peace. 
But about midnight we were called into line of battle 
and told that the regiment of Cherokees under Col. 
Drue had deserted and all gone to the camp of Hopoth- 
leholu and as they knew our position and force, we were 
momentarily expecting an attack. I was too sleepy to 
stay awake and our officers walked the line to see that 
every man was in readiness to meet the expected, when 
Lieut. Haynes of Company I passed along and found 
me asleep. He was a large man and of fine physique 
and had endurance equal to any Indian, and to impress 
me with importance of my vigilance, he in short order, 
jerked a limb from a sapling and proceeded with a court- 
martial, not exactly in military style, but much after 
the style of a parent with his little boy, he gave me a 
good whipping, an act that I have always regarded as 

one of great kindness, it drove sleep from my eyes. 
Lieut. Haynes never reported me to the commanding 
officer and therefore, through his manly kindness I 
avoided a courtmartial, and from that time ever after- 
wards I endeavored to show to him my appreciation by 
my fidelity to him, and when Lieut. Haynes was to per- 


form any duty, my chief delight was to be numbered 
with his men. He seemed glad to have me. 

At the break of day on the following morning, Dec. 
9th, 1861, we marched out and started down the river 
on retreat. I supposed that we were not strong enough 
after our loss of one regiment, which served to reinforce 
the enemy ; but in the sequel found that our retreat was 
to call him from his stronghold in the mountains, so we 
could better get at him. We had marched only a few 
miles down the river, and while crossing a good large 
creek, we heard the rattle of guns and the chatter 
of the Indians, which told us of the approach 
of the enemy. Col. Sims formed the regiment and dis- 
mounted the men out on a high prairie, and gained the 
timber in time to meet their advance. The fighting was 
hot and we drove them some two miles up the creek 
(Birds Creek), to a point where the hills come up sharp 
to the creek in a rough and broken way that furnished 
the retreating foe the needed shelter. Col. Sims called 
the regiment to horse for the purpose of gi\ing chase, 
but from the lateness of the hour we did not follow. 
We encamped for several days and nights on the creek, 
just below the battle ground. The battle lasted for 
three hours. We buried all of our dead, and after fully 
exploring the field I was told by an old man that this was 
the bloodiest battle that the red man had known since 
the battle of the famous Horse Shoe. Those who should 
know best, said that our enemy lost at least 500 on the 
field, besides the wounded and prisoners. Our losses 
were not so great, probably 300 would be a large esti- 
mate, but of the 9th, our losses were not so heavy as at 
Round Mountain, and our sufferings were not so severe, 
for we could well care for the wounded. On the night 
after the battle, there fell about three inches of snow, 
and it was my lot to be on guard over the prisoners that 
had been taken by our command, about 40 that were 
accommodated at a large fire made of logs. Here I wit- 
nessed the most complete package of human beings that 


it has ever been my fortune to witness. They selected 
the smokey side of the fire and all stood in a circular 
crowd and by some known means all reclined at one 
time in such a manner that the legs of each which were 
covered with leggings of hide, formed a bed for the 
body of another, and so that all were accommodated, 
and the blankets that they wore were spread so as to 
completely cover them head and all, so that the sleeping 
Indians in bed occupied a space that would not have ac- 
commodated one-fourth their number of Texans. The 
circle looked like it might be 12 feet across and about 
2 feet deep, and was solid Indians, over which this writer 
kept vigil during the snow storm. Not a sound or a 
movement did I discover from the living mass, and I 
was filled with wonder, to think how they could endure 
the ravages of the "itch" and "lice" (with which all 
were well stocked) without even scratching, and while 
thus meditating upon the good qualities of Indians as 
bed-fellows, they all at once uttered a howl that was a 
good representation of the howl of a pack of wolves. This 
howl awakened the relief guard, who jumped, each with 
his arms, expecting a great outburst for their liberty, 
but not a movement was made, but they slept or sulled 
as peacably as before until daylight, when the guard 
raised the cover from the pile, which they understood as 
a command to get up. They that day turned over to 
some Indians who told me they were Cawpaws. They 
were slimmer made and darker than other Indians. I do 
not know what became of our Indian prisoners, as they 
were all given into the hands of their own nationality 
and whether executed or loosed I never knew, but this 
I do know, we had no prisoners returned to us. 

We again fell back to Fort Gibson and found the 
"measles" still killing our friends, where we remained 
awaiting upon the sick and burying the dead, until the 
arrival of Col. Mcintosh, when another campaign was 
inaugurated. Mcintosh at the head of the 3rd, 6th and 
11th regiments and Whitfield's battallions marched upon 


the enemy, then encamped on a small creek, which the 
Indians called Oostenarly. And Col. Sims again at the 
head of the 9th marched up the river to join Gen. Coop- 
er above Tulcy Valley, we first learned of the engage- 
ment which Maj. Ross called Chenstancerlie. Read 
history Ross' Brigade, pages 44, 45, 46, 47 and 48, to 
which it is my purpose to add these pages. 


Chapter IX. 

Taken from Victor M. Ross' History as follows: 
I regard it needless to say that our Indians never 
failed to paint and dance before entering into a battle, 
and always danced over the scalps after a battle. This 
act was the end. After the scalp dance the paint was 
washed off 

Christmas eve night we were encamped in a grove on 
a beautiful little stream that emptied into the Arkansaw 
river, and after the guard mount, quite a number of the 
soldiers, considering the holiday season, concluded that 
we would celebrate the approaching festive holiday and 
in a noisy manner proceeded with the hilarities of the 
wild and wooly soldier. Col. Sims at once sent us or- 
ders to retire without further noise. This order was re- 
ceived with great protest. Not even free on Christmas. 
So we thought best to send a delegation to Col. Sims 
and ask him to allow us a little recreation, as it was 
Christmas. This writer was with the delegation who 
went to Col. Sims' quarters with the request. I well re- 
member him reclining before his campfire, half dressed 
and wrapped with his blanket, with saddle, sword and 
pistols all within easy reach, while his famous horse 
stood munching only a few yards from his bed. A 
change was noted from the fine cultured citizen of a 
few months ago to the professional warrior, such was 
his theory and convictions, and his life demonstrated 
his convictions. On making our errand known to him 
he only arose to a sitting pasture on his couch, and his 
answer was: "No! Sons, No! remember you are sol- 
diers, and I, as your commander, have promised to keep 


you at all times in a manner that you shall be able to 
render to your country the most effective service, and 
while we rejoice with the season, we must make no 
demonstration, for we are in the front of a savage ene- 
my and know not when he may strike at us. No! go 
to your beds and sleep, and husband all your energies 
for the hard service that is yet before us." It is need- 
less to say we went to bed, and the camp was quiet till 
the shrill note of the bugle told us that it was Christ- 
mas morning, saddle up and on the march and from 
day to day thus continued for many cold and starving 
days into the mountains and on the plains. Pikes Peak 
was seen and pointed out as in view for several days 
and rations gave out, and it was on this campaign 
where the Indian pony was tested as food. Will say it 
was good to the hungry men, the only disgusting thing 
about it was the smell, while it was roasting it smelled 
like a sweaty horse. See Ross' Brigade History, page 
48. I here want to record what I saw on this march of 
endurance: On one day and night the sleet fell and 
accumulated on guns, sticks, and all objects to a thick- 
ness of more than one inch, and during this time many 
of our Indians had no hats or head covers, and "Old 
Pap," before spoken of, wore his peacock feather trail- 
ing down his back with enough ice on it as to be as 
large as his arm, and on passing those Indians many 
of them had not more apparel than would cover one- 
half the naked body — but game to the last, they never 
complain. The country was mountain and plain and 
in this cold and starved condition the scenery was not 
attractive. There were no game or other food, but ice, 
wind, snow, sleet and starvation was our experience, 
and as a result of the great midwinter march only a few 
worthless ponies and a small number of prisoners was 
all that I ever knew, as a result for so much suffering. 
We returned by long weary marches to our wagon train 
which we met in a beautiful valley on the north bank of 
the Arkansaw river, called Tulcy town. There was 


only one single house in the valley and I learned it was 
a sweat house used by the Indians in curing disease. 
Hot sweat and cold baths. It was here that I saw the 
scene that I have heard described in savage life of run- 
ning the "gauntlet." I did not see the commencement 
for I only knew what was going on, when I heard the 
report of arms and saw the great commotion among the 
Indians and rode to the scene as soon as I could get to 
them. From what I saw the Indians had formed them- 
selves in a manner to command the way for the runners 
and if fleetness save them, they were out of the hands of 
their tormentors. I saw but one take the run, he was a 
long slim Indian prisoner, I do not know his tribe and I 
do not know whether it was his first run or not, but am of 
the opinion that he had made the race with his compan- 
ions and had run through unhurt and had been recap- 
tured and given a second run, as many had been 
killed before I got there, but let that be as it may, I saw 
him run and "Oh my God!" it was a run not only for 
life, but from cruel captors. As he started, clubs and 
tomahawks were hurled at him, knives and stones, then 
arrows from bows, and after that, guns were fired at 
him, in short, the air was full of deadly missies after 
him. I think that each class of arms were discharged 
from certain limits, thus probably ten steps for knives 
and tomahawks, fifteen or twenty steps for war clubs 
and stones, and thirty to forty for bows and arrows, and 
the balance for guns and pistols, probably none shot 
under sixty steps, but the runner made it out with a 
knock-down and ran like a ghost and a great howling 
multitude after him, and I fully believe if he had been 
in a broken country he would have baffled them all but 
it was smooth, level prairie and he ran east down the 
river for more than one mile, and the mob after him and 
finally he disappeared behind the bank of the river and 
his pursuers close after him. He ran down the sand 
bar for two or three hundred yards and came to an old 
Burr Oak that stood on the bank where the waters had 


washed the earth from a part of the roots, which prom- 
ised him shelter and, like the rabbit pursued by a pack 
of hounds, he hid himself amid the roots of the oak un- 
der the embankment. He was followed, dragged out 
and dispatched amid a howling din of his captors. My 
heart was touched with such cruelty. I still recollect 
the scene and have no patience with baby policy when 
it comes to governing the Indians. 

From Tulcy town we again moved to Fort Gibson and 
found that many of our sick had died of measles, and 
while Col. Sims was in command of that post it appears 
that our flag was nearly always at half mast and a fun- 
eral possession was of daily occurrence. In the grave- 
yard southeast of Fort Gibson are buried many of the 
9th Texas Cavalry. Orders were finally received tore- 
tire down the river to Horsehead bayou for winter quar- 
ters. I think it was about the middle or last of January 
when we took up the line of march to winter quarters. 
We left the Indians with great rejoicings and none 
seemed inclined to remain in the B. I. T. or beautiful 
Indian Territory. Van Bur en was the first town that 
we struck that was peopled with our own race and kept 
on "top bug juice" and it is not necessary to say that 
we here took Christmas notwithstanding heroic efforts 
of the officers to keep us sober. We encamped that 
night near the residence of Dr. Throuston, a noted doc- 
tor, who in the early days of Texas was well known on 
account of his family medicines which were a household 
necessity. A wag in our company claimed that the reg- 
iment were not drunk but affected by the medicinal 
power from encamping near the doctor's labratory. 
Recovery was gradual but by the time we got to the al- 
loted ground for a permanent camp we were duly sober. 

Horsehead is the name of a creek and we occupied 
land known as the Slidell place. Each mess set about 
building, as fancy and inclination suggested. Twelve 
men was the required number for a mess and our mess 
cut logs and hauled them in and in a short time had our 


house fit for habitation and moved in. It was a log cabin 
about six feet high to the eaves and covered with split 
boards on ribpoles that were held in place by other poles 
for weighting down the roof, a dirt floor and a huge fire- 
place built with stone and mud, and six feet from the 
rear of the shanty there wa3 a log put across the house 
and upon this was framed a wide bed, the full width of 
the house, and under this scaffold bedstead was storage 
for feed, saddles and all such things as have need to be 
kept dry, and at night we made a huge fire and our feet 
were well warmed and we felt like we were settled for 
life. We had a lot of sick and we built a cabin for the 
sick, also one for the guard. These winter quarters 
were called "Cantonment Slidell" and we wrote to our 
friends from these camps, and quite a number of us got 
letters from home which were the first that we had. 
The effects of the winter exposure was telling in the 
broken health of the soldiers, many were suffering with 
"dysintery" and our surgeon, Dr. James Robertson, 
appeared to have only opium as a remedy and the hour 
of 10 o'clock a. m. was the sick call, when he usually 
came over the sterotyped questions and issued three 
small opium pills and appeared to be greatly surprised 
that the disease did not respond to his treatment, but 
alas in many cases it came to stay and solitary soldier's 
graves tells of its ravages. The only sport we had at 
this camp was horse racing, in which we tried the speed 
of some of the Arkansaw stock to our sorrow. One lit- 
tle gray horse belonging to an old hayseed beat one of 
our best horses, but as the man who was beaten still 
lives, I will let him tell of his defeat. After only a 
short stay we were ordered to join McCullough at Fay- 
etteville and again we took the line of march, and in a 
few days were encamped on Boston Mountain. While 
in this camp with two other companions this writer went 
without leave in search of game, and in search of game 
a few miles out we had the luck to kill a fine large hog, 
which we proceeded to skin in the usual style and while 


thus engaged, a squad of cavalry rode up to us and 
charged that we had fired guns on their post of duty 
and would be forced to explain the causes to the officers 
on duty, hence with an arrest we were marched to 
headquarters. It was a regiment of Gen. Price on post 
there. We not knowing, had killed our hog very near 
their videts. We explained to the officer who and what 
we were, and by him suffered to return to our camp. 
By way of compensation for the trouble we had caused, 
we left with them one-half of the hog. While in this 
camp we again heard from home, as our officers fur- 
loughed at Fort Gibson, returned, and with a lot of re- 
cruits, letters, clothing and compliments from dear ones 
at home. I do not know the number of recruits re- 
ceived here, for at the death of Captain Stuart I had 
nothing further to do with the company papers. We 
had a fine position on the main road south from Fay- 
etteville and were daily expecting an engagement, the 
enemy was nearing the town and we in line of battle, 
six miles south, on the top of the mountain, thus over- 
looking the quiet little town. When the enemy's advance 
reached the town, our pickets burned the public build- 
ings. It was a grand sight and curious it was to me, to 
think that men would erect a courthouse today and ad- 
mire it as a grand improvement, and tomorrow will ap- 
ply the torch of destruction with a joyous hand, such 
was the case when we burned Fayetteville, Ark., but 
the enemy came no nearer than the burned town, but 
halted, encamped and turned back after remaining 
about one week. About this time, March 1st, 1862, 
Majors Ross and Whitfield made the ride for the rear of 
the enemy, where Maj. Ross took Keitsville with a num- 
ber of prisoners (Maj. Ross in his History Brigade, page 
55, says Maj. Ross commanded companies G and I, of 
the 3rd Texas Cavalry) but let that be as it will, I will 
say that he also carried a detachment from the 9th Tex- 
as Cavalry that my recollection says, was commanded 
by Lieut. Haynes, of Company I, 8th Texas, and I 


know of some of my companions, one at least, now liv- 
ing, that was in the Keitsville raid. The first time any 
of us were ever commanded by Gen. L. S. Ross, quite a 
number of our company were with Maj. Ross. I have 
here made this statement not as a criticism on Major 
Ross' book but merely to correct his error, and to show 
that the 9th Texas Cavalry took a part in all engage- 
ments in reach of us to the day of paroles. 

I suppose this gallant exploit of these detachments 
was the probable cause of the falling back of Seigles 
and Curtis' forces. (See Ross' History, Ross' Brigade, 
pages 55, 56, 57, 58, 59 and 60). 


Chapter X. 

It was on the morning of March 5th, 1862, that I first 
saw the forces of Gen. Seigel with uniforms and glittering 
arms as they moved from Bentonville, and while think- 
ing of their grandeur received orders to "forward, 
quick time, march!" and soon heard the rattle of small 
arms and roar of artillery in the engagement as told by 
Major Rose on page 56 of his History of Ross' Brigade, 
our encampment that night we called Camp Stephens, 
and early next morning the battle of Elkhorn began by 
the Federal artillery opening upon our lines. The 9th 
Texas being the nearest to the battery were the first to 
reach the guns and company K, the center and guide 
company of the regiment, was the first to plant a flag on 
that battery. Company K alone lost 23 men in this con- 
flict and from that day the flag of that company became 
the colors of the 9th Texas Cavalry. It was not a red 
cross, but a small brownish red silk flag, in the center of 
which was a crescent moon and thirteen five-pointed sil- 
ver stars. It was trimmed with silk fringe and was at- 
tached to a dark mahogany colored staff with a gilded 
spear head at the top. It is still in the possession of Maj. 
Dial, who was 3rd Lieutenant and commanded company 
K in the battle. This description is here given to clear 
up some controversy the veterans are having as to our 
first battle flag. After this battle the flags of the other 
companies were furled. I do not know whether it was 
because company K was the color company, or because 
it was the first flag we ever planted on an enemy's bat- 
tery that caused it to become the regimental colors, but 


this I know, it was adopted and became the flag of the 
9th Texas Cavalry, and we dressed upon it, we carried it, 
we loved it, and, as proof that we never lost it, its dilap- 
idated remains can yet be seen at our annual reunions, 
where it is recognized by the veterans now living. Af- 
ter the battle of Elkhorn I never saw the flag of the Titus 
Greys or any of the other companies, but was informed 
by our officers that they had all been sent to Austin, 
Texas, and were there in the safe-keeping of the Gov- 

On the taking of the battery the Indians under Col. 
Pike were highly elated and many of them straddled the 
guns and rode them in joy over the victory. The gun- 
ners were all killed and nearly all the horses, only team 
enough being left to move one gun. 

Many incidents worthy of note occurred here, one of 
which I call to mind as showing the difference in war- 
fare with raw recruits and a trained army. While the 
engagement was at its hottest one federal who thought 
it was time to surrender with hands -up-lif ted in token of 
surrender ran up to a member of company K, Bill Rip- 
ley, who not understanding his gestures deliberately 
dealt him a blow on the head with the butt of his gun, 
prostrating him with his dead comrades. Bill ruined his 
gun, as it was badly bent, but he hung to it and used it 
during the remainder of the battle. Another instance 
I will here relate : As before stated, there were onlv 
horses enough left to carry off one gun of the captured 
battery, which was immediately taken from the field. 
Three guns were left standing just as they had been last 
used upon us until night, when Capt. L. D. King of 
company D sent a detail from his company to cut them 
down or otherwise destroy their efficiency, as we could 
not use them. One of the guns had a charge placed in 
the muzzle that had not been rammed down when the 
battery was taken, and the ramrod was lying by the 
soldier who had fallen with it in his hands. Seeing this, 
suggested to the detail that they could load the guns and 


perchance have them do some execution for us while 
undergoing the process of destruction. The thought was 
put into execution, each gun being filled to the muzzle 
with available ammunition, whether grapeshot, case or 
canister the young soldiers neither knew nor cared. By 
a labored effort they succeeded in loading the guns and 
rolling them to a place from which the enemy could be 
seen. After taking what they thought to be deliberate 
aim they proceeded to build huge fires of brush and rails 
under the guns, which they reasoned would become suf- 
ficiently heated to discharge their contents into the Fed- 
eral ranks. 

After making all right they lighted the fires and re- 
joined the regiment. Nothing of the matter was known 
to the officers until about 2 o'clock on the morning of 
the 7th when the whole earth appeared to be jarred by 
the rapid and continued firing. The alarm was general, 
for it was a terrible roar ; it appearing as if the artillery 
of both armies had been massed during the night and 
had now opened upon the sleeping lines. The alarm was 
terrible until one of the detail remarked: "It's nothing 
only our battery firing on 'em." 

I suppose each commander reported that he was at- 
tacked by his opponent during the night ; at any rate 
our officers were on the alert until daylight, when Van 
Dorn and Seigel, apparently by mutual consent, sepa- 
rated without further fighting. 

I have heard and read a great many comments setting 
forth the reasons for the strange conduct of these two 
commanding^officers on both sides, and it is my convic- 
tion that Van Dorn withdrew for want of a commander, 
and Seigel withdrew because he thought Van Dorn had 
received heavy reinforcements and had planted a battery 
in a position commanding his lines of defense. We will 
probably never know all about it, and much of what 
we do know will be disputed. 

The army fell back to the wagon train, which was en- 
camped on Boston Mountains, where we rested for only 


a few days, then started in the direction of our winter 
quarters on Horsehead Creek. Before reaching that 
point our line of march was turned toward Des Arc on 
White river, where we were dismounted and embarked 
for Memphis, following the 3rd Texas, as told on page 
64 of Major Rose's book. 

Our horses were sent back to Texas by a detail for 
that purpose, each company's horses being sent to the sol- 
diers' homes. It was while serving on this detail that the 
writer got acquainted with the Buffalo gnat, an in- 
sect of the fly species, that proved very destructive to 
our horses, and especially destructive to our mules, of 
which we had quite a number. 

Our march was tedious, each man leading four horses, 
and as they were all saddled we had much difficulty in 
keeping the saddle blankets in proper place, and the 
roads were rough and muddy. We crossed the Arkan- 
saw river at Little Rock, and from thence to Texas by 
any route by which we could cross the many streams, 
which were filled to overflowing from the heavy rains 
that had continued to fall during our march. 

We passed by Hot Springs, then only a small village 
with one small wooden hotel and two or three stores. I 
remember the Springs in their native appearance. At 
the foot of the mountain on the little creek bank there 
was a clear, cool spring that supported a little branch, 
such as may be seen in any mountainous country, and 
about half-way up the mountain was the first hot spring. 
The water was hot enough to burn the mouth, but we 
could drink it by taking small sips as one drinks hot 
coffee. Further up the hill, near the top, was a large 
and ugly hole of water that was scalding hot, and about 
this spring was much hog hair, for the people in the vi- 
cinity had been scalding hogs in the spring. Leaving 
Hot Springs we had no trouble until we reached Red 
River, which was full from hill to hill, and we were forced 
to ferry across the bottom for one and one-half miles 
and then jump our horses into water three feet deep. It 


was during this ferriage that buffalo gnats killed so many 
horses and mules. Finally we reached Mt. Pleasant, 
delivered our horses and visited our mothers and sisters. 


Chapter XL 

We got the horses disposed of about the first of June, 
and about the first of August we were ordered to rejoin 
our regiment on foot as infantry, and were called to 
rendezvous at Paris, Texas. A few days later we took 
up our line of march for the army then in Mississippi on 
the Central railroad. We had been on the march sev- 
eral days and were encamped on Red River near Myrtle 
Springs ; the men were in bad spirits, threatening mu- 
tiny, when we received orders to return to our homes 
back in Texas, to gather up our horses and carry 
them back to the brigade. There was great joy in the 
camp over this order. We returned to our homes and 
proceeded at once to gather up the horses and company 
I reported to Lieutenant Miller at Mt. Pleasant, Texas. 
This was about the middle of September, 1862, as noted 
on page 80 of Major Rose's book. We soon resumed the 
march for the army by way of Shreveport, Monroe and 

Nothing outside the usual daily routine occurred on 
this march until near Vicksburg, when a body of the en- 
emy was reported only a few miles to our left. We has- 
tened with all possible speed to reach protection under 
the guns at Vicksburg, passing within range while a 
sharp cannonade was going on between the forts at 
Vicksburg and some gunboats just behind the bend and 
opposite Gen. Grant's "cut off canal," some five or six 
miles west of the city. I thought we passed uncomfort- 
ably close to these huge iron monsters, but soon found 


that all their shots were fired at the city, and passed far 
over our heads. 

One shot from about the lowest battery in Vicksburg 
fell near our line while we were advancing, and after 
striking the ground passed near where the writer was 
urging his four bronchos to a quick time march. When 
it stopped I got a fair look at it; saw that it was round, 
and supposed it to be a shell, as it was some 10 or 12 
inches in diameter, thrown from a mortar six or eight 
miles away. We reached the river opposite the city and 
were taken to the other shore in two trips of the steam 
ferry boat, and while we were waiting on the opposite 
shore for the return of the boat we could see the signal 
flags telling of the fight, but knew not their meaning. 
We finally crossed the river and went into camp at the 
Fair Grounds and watched the exploding shells until 
night, and were finally lulled to sleep by the soothing 
notes of "Whistling Dick," whose voice is still remem- 
bered as one of the sublime things of life. 

On the following morning we moved out from Vicks- 
buro:, a movement that was sanctioned by this writer, 
as there was no particular fascination in a city where 
the iron shells were paying constant visits, the destruc- 
tive power of which was telling in many places. I well 
remember a huge hole in the hard street that had been 
excavated by an exploding shell that looked as if it 
might have killed half a company. 

We moved up the ridge between Yazoo City and Jack- 
son, by way of Goodman, and at the end of three days 
were near our regiment. Our last camp was at Duck 
Hill, twelve or fifteen miles from where the regiment 
was camped, and so great was the mental strain that a 
number of the men slipped off from our camp, visited the 
regiment and announced the horses, and the next morn- 
ing there were several of the regiment in our camp. We 
moved to the regiment, which was encamped near Gren- 
ada, and delivered our charges into their hands. We 
carried clothing and letters for the boys, and that day 


was spent in a general rejoicing. The few recruits who 
came with us appeared much dejected when they saw 
what discipline means when applied to the ranks of an 
army, and I remember one recruit who belonged to my 
mess while we were with the horses, and joined our old 
mess when we returned to the regiment. Lieutenant J. 
A. Coplin was a member of the mess and as we were 
preparing the camp he gave some order to the recruit 
which the latter seemed to think was unauthorized, and 
responded to the order by giving Coplin a cursing. Cop- 
lin was high tempered and thought to initiate the recruit 
by a genteel thrashing. When it was found that they 
were too equally matched for comfort, each tried to foul 
the other with weapons, but they were parted before any 
harm was done. After an explanation the matter was 
satisfactorily arranged and was never known to but few, 
consequently no arrests were made and nothing was said 
of the fight, which was a close one. 

I have no data from which to write, but think it was 
from about the middle of November to the 9th of Decem- 
ber, 1862, that we remained near Grenada, where we 
were remounted. While here we were reviewed by a 
number of officers, among them Major-General Maury. 
He was a small man and did not make the appearance 
the writer supposed a Major-General should, for he was 
remarkably plain, even more so than any of his staff, 
even his Orderly looked more like an officer than did the 
General himself, but soldiers who pointed him out to me 
said that in courage and wisdom he was second to no 
man in that army. 

A few days later we were again on review before Pres- 
ident Jefferson Davis, General-in-Chief C. S. A., and 
after passing in review we were consolidated in block to 
listen to a speech from the President, who spoke from 
his horse. 

President Davis appeared to be about fifty years of 
age, was tall and thin, with bony hands and long fingers, 
high cheek bones and high forehead; had blue eyes, a 


sharp nose, thin lips, a wide square set mouth. He ap- 
peared to me to be in bad health, his looks suggesting 
dyspepsia or nervousness from overwork. He was neat- 
ly dressed in Confederate grey with gold buttons, but I 
recollect no ensignia of his rank. With him were some 
members of his cabinet, among them, I think, John H. 
Reagan. Many of them were gaudily dressed, but I do 
not now remember their names and rank. 

After we were formed, the President in a clear, calm 
voice addressed us. I was at Least fifty yards away, but 
so clear was his speech and so close the attention that 
much. of his address was clearly nuderstood. 

I do not now remember much of what he said, more 
than the thanks he bestowed upon us for manliness and 
soldierly bearing. To Missouri, Arkansas and Texas he 
spoke in turn, and then to Mississippi. The latter he re- 
minded that he too was a Mississippian, his home, his all 
Was there, and if that State fell into the hands of the 
enemy he would suffer in common with them. He 
finished by telling us that the fight would t continue 
until our independence was gained or our last resource 
exhausted; and somehow I got it into my head that 
if all the States east of the Mississippi river were taken, 
we would continue the fight in the West and Mexico, 
and only end when driven into the Pacific Ocean. 

So after that speech I thought no more of the end of 
the war, for I felt it was to have no end while one of us 

It was no great while after we were remounted that a 
detachment was sent near to Vicksburg to guard the 
waterways and keep the Commanding General posted as 
-to the movements of the enemy on the river. I am not 
positive as to who commanded this expedition, but be- 
lieve it was Lieutenant -Colonel Barnhart. Will say that 
this part of the cavalry was not on the Holly Springs 
affair, which started out about the 12th of December, 
1862. For a full history of this affair the reader is re- 
ferred to Maj. Rose' History, pages 131-132, from which 


it had its conception within the Ross Texas Brigade, 
who took no small part in the execution of that ma- 
neuver, (see pages 84, 85 and 86 of Major Ross's 
History.) which was dashingly executed on the morn- 
ing of December 22, 1862. 


Chapter XII. 

I here recall an incident that has left a lasting im- 
pression on at least the name of a private soldier of com- 
pany I, 9th Texas Cavalry. C. C. Carr, a slender strip- 
ling, about 19 years old, with black hair and eyes, was 
noted for his quaint sayings, possessed a peculiar talent 
for mimicry, was always ready for anything and never 
surprised or nonplussed at anything that presented 
itself before him. When the 9th Texas reached the 
square a woman informed Carr that an officer of the en- 
emy was quartered in a house close by, and he forth- 
with set out to effect his capture. He left the ranks in a 
run, and into the house he went with a long old rusty 
musket, (Carr never kept his gun bright) and demanded 
the officer's surrender. The Federal seeing no chance 
for escape while looking down the muzzle of Carr's old 
musket, surrendered, but being of a military turn of 
mind, thought it was not the proper thing to hand his 
arms over to an inferior in rank and asked for an 
officer to receive his sword. "What is your rank?" 
asked Carr. 

"I am Colonel of regiment, U. S.A." was 

the reply. 

"All right, that is my rank; I am Col. C. C. Carr, 
9th Texas Cavalry, C. S. A." politely responded Carr 
reaching for the sabre with his left hand, while he 
kept the muzzle of his musket uncomfortably close to 
his prisoner's head with his right, "turn out without 
delay;" and he brought him in a prisoner of war, and 
from that event he was called Colonel Carr in his com- 


pany and by his comrades, a name he still .wears and 
to which we think he is justly entitled. 

So generally was the title bestowed that I think he 
must have forgotten his given name Charlie for once 
about a year after this when a part of the command 
made an attempt on a Yankee forging train and were 
repulsed, routed and run over near Satartia, Miss., by a 
large force of Cavalry and were scattered like young 
partridges hid in the weeds, etc. After the Yankees 
had moved off and we were looking over the field, among 
others, Carr was missing. After hunting for him for 
some time we called out for Carr ! Carr ! ! Charlie Carr ! ! ! 
and no answer. We were beginning to feel bad, and 
fear him dead, or mortally wounded, as we were near 
when he was last seen. Still calling Carr! Carr! ! Char- 
lie Car, when one of the company suggested that we 
call Carr! Carr! Colonel Carr! when to our joy and sur- 
prise he answered rising up from his hiding place in the 
weeds, answering here am I sir! He had heard us be- 
fore but was not certain that it was not the enemy call- 
ing for him and as he had no desire to be made a pris- 
oner refused to answer, but on hearing his name as it 
was called in his mess knew his friends. He still lives, 
loved and respected as Colonel Carr. As a soldier he 
was happy and careless and a vein of humor ran 
through his soldier life that caused many a hearty 
laugh. With him there were no alarms, there were no 
surprises — young, hearty and willing. He was always 
ready for duty, either foraging or fighting. To him it 
was the same jolly war. In heat or cold, rain or shine, 
he was the same roggish Col. Carr. As a citizen, no 
one is more loyal, in business none more accommodat- 
ing, and in his community none more enterprising. As 
an honored soldier, an honorable citizen, long may he 
live to honor and be honored by his native home, Texas. 

The movements of the Brigade are well told by Maj. 
Ross, page 92 of the March to Tennessee and the battle 
of Thompson's Station, in which the Texas Brigade all 


lost heavily. And by the way, it was here that General 
Van Dorn made the capture of Lieut. -Colonel Shafter 
and his command. It was a hard fight but it was victor- 
ious to our arms. It was fought about the 7th of March, 
1863. The writer has no data from which to write, but 
recollects it to have been a bloody battle, lasting about 
five hours, and hotly contested all that time. A part of 
the time this writer fought in ranks with 3rd Texas. 


Chapter XIII. 

This writer will now speak of the officers of the 9th 
Texas Cavalry, as the data from this will be taken from 
a small diary that was kept by Col. Dud W. Jones, who 
has heretofore passed with but few words, as little could 
be learned of him, a fact that Maj. Ross regrets. See 
page 150, History Ross' Brigade. D. W. Jones was the 
grandson of Jesse Jones, a pioneer of the Northeast sec- 
tion of Texas, and one of the first settlers of that part of 
the State, now known as Lamar county. He was the 
son of Henry Jones and Martha Heron Jones, who came 
to Texas and settled in Lamar county in the year 1836, 
and in 1840, removed to Titus county and settled on a 
farm, three miles from Mt. Pleasant, where Dud W. 
Jones was born (1840). He was the second son of a 
family of five children — two girls and three boys, none ( 
of whom are now living. The only member of the fam- 
ily now living is a half sister — Mrs. Mattie E. Nugent, 
who now resides on the old Henry Jones homestead, 
near Mt. Pleasant, Texas, and from whom these datas 
are learned. His early education was from his mother 
and the common schools. After he grew up he attended 

a school at Coffeeville, Texas, known as the Murray In- 
stitute, which was at that time one of the best, if not the 
best, school in that part of Texas. He left school to en- 
list as a private soldier in the Titus Greys, Company I, 
9th Texas Cavalry. 

As a boy, he was studious, and a lovable boy — a great 
favorite with his father's slaves, and as if by nature he 


was the arbitrator among the children of the household 
and farm. 

After the surrender he traveled over the United States 
for about one year and returned to his father's home in 
1866, and was elected to represent Titus county in the 
convention that framed the present constitution; re- 
moved to Houston in 1867 and entered the practice of 
law, in a firm of Jones & Barzizer, and was editing a 
paper at Houston, the Vidette, one of Houston's first 
dailies. He died of hemorage of the bowels, in July 
1869, and was buried at Houston, and his father Henry 
Jones erected a tombstone at his grave. 

As Mrs. Nugent was very small at the time of his 
death she remembers but little of him, only that the dis- 
tance then so great that he was dead and buried before 
the family knew of his sickness. He was appointed 
Adjutant of the regiment on its organization and served 
as such until the reorganization in May, 1862, and at 
that time was only 22 years old, but was familiar with 
all the duties of a commander of a regiment. 

He was of light complexion, with dark hair and 
brown eyes, slim and of good heighth, 5 feet 10 or 11 
inches, and was by habit scrupulously neat, and very 
precise in all his communication as well as dress, "a 
great ladies man," and much of his diary is given to his 
enjoyment with them when not on duty. He was al- 
ways studious, and kept his books with him when possi- 
ble. He established a library for the 9th and it con- 
tained many valuable volumes. In July 1863, his diary 
speaks of his loosing his Shakespeare and going back to 
hunt it. If this writer should sum up his nature in few 
words it would be : Dress, his pride; books, his glory, 
and war his profession, while a soldier. At his death 
his papers were all lost, and the only writing now 
known is the small pocket diary kept by him from April 
1863 to April 1864, and much of it is so finely written 
and from exposure to wet weather cannot be read. He 
was greatly beloved by his men and considered by his 


superiors to equal at arms with any regiment in the ser- 
vice of equal numbers. This writer believes that he 
being the youngest Colonel was more restive and more 
apt to stir up the enemy and- bring about an engage- 
ment. He was brave and generous, and filled the posi- 
tion he occupied at least, to the satisfaction of the De- 
partment at Richmond as well as his immediate com- 

He appears to be a little vain and fond of compli- 
ments, especially from his superiors. Will copy 
from diary April 23, 1863: ''We are still in camp near 
Spring Hill, we drill, Gen. Van Dorn comes out to see 
us drill, he remarked that the 9th Texas Cavalry was 
the best horsemen in the "world" and inferior to none 
in drill. The weather still fine, April 24, 1863, we drill 
again, Gen. Van Dorn is out again, the 3rd Texas looses 
a horse in the charge, a few ladies are out, the weather 
is nice, April 27, 1863, Maj. Bates and I go to Spring 
church, a large congregation, a good sermon, return to 
'camp, stake off encampment, ride back to town, again 
send in our cards, are accepted, promise to go to church, 
it rains, we do not go." And thus from day to day he 
faithfully records his movements of drill and of picket 
duty. While near Spring Hill, Tenn., on Sunday April 
24, he got permission from Van Dorn to go on a scout 
with 150 men, moves out at 4p, m., feeds at Hillsboro, 
at dark learns that he cannot capture the Federal pick- 
ets, moves up to Rodger's Bridge, takes the Nashville 
Pike, secrets the regiment in Sycamore hollow, remain 
till daylight and then moves back to Rodger's Bridge, 
pressed a wagon, load it with bacon and flour, Federals 
come in sight and fire on us, feed again at Hillsboro 
and return to camp. On the 8th we had review, on the 
11th the Federals come out and we go to meet them. 
After this he notes we have roll call three times a day, 
an item many of us recollect, as it was very inconven- 
ient to soldiers of the line. On Monday the 20th of 
April, had corps review, Gen. Bragg's Inspector Gener- 


al is out. On Monday April 29, he writes: "About six 
o'clock this morning a courier arrives and reports that 
Col. Brooks, of the Legion, had been attacked on pick- 
et and the Federals had captured 120 of his men, burned 
all his wagons and camp equippage, and the 9th and 3rd 
are ordered out to assist them. We moved out, but they 
got back before we could cut them off, but had a close 
race. On the 29th, he tells of Van Dorn and move- 
ments at some length. On May 7th, 1863, about seven 
o'clock a. m., Dr. Peters shot Gen. Van Dorn, dies 
about 10 o'clock. On the 8th we are ordered out to see 
the funeral of Gen. Van Dorn" and he thus gives the or- 
der in which they march. They escort with crape on 
their arms. The hearse drawn by two black horses, the 
staff, then Armstrong's Brigade go to Columbia and we 
go to camp, cook two days rations and go on picket. 
Then we have constant picket fighting until the 19th of 
May, when we move out for Mississippi again, and are 
encamped near Canton on June 5th, thus showing a 
long forced march, some days as far as 30 miles. 
Again we hear the voice of "Whistling Dick" as he 
bellows defiance at Vicksburg near 40 miles away. 
From this time until the fall of Jackson, about July 17, 
fighting occurred almost every day in the front of the. 
Federals, then we move to the rear and kept them con- 
stantly annoyed, fighting nearly every day, On Mon- 
day, July 27, the Federals were all fallen back on the 
river and all was quiet. We were encamped on Pearl 
river, near Jackson, and our headquarters were at 
Brandon, when we received Gen. Johnston's famous or- 
der No. 14, granting one furlough to every 25 men. 
Furloughs were soon drawn and sent up, but returned 
on 31st for discriptive roll of the furloughed, and on 
Aug. 1st, we got our baggage from Okalona, on the 2, 
we move down to Balton, had some skirmishing until 
the 10th, when Col. Jones' leave of absence came back 
approved, and he starts home, but is baffled and con- 
cludes to visit Richmond and Lee's army. He records 


his travels from Brandon by Meridian, Demopalis to 
Atlanta, Ga., had many difficulties in his travels, gets 
there the 15th, then to Knoxville and over the moun- 
tains, compliments the Roanoke Valley, then to Lynch- 
burg, which he says is a nice place. On Friday, Aug. 
21, he is there, and says it is a day of fasting and 
prayer, business all closed, reaches Richmond at 6 a. 
m. on the 22nd, and stops at the Ballard House, finds the 
city gay and lively. On Sunday Aug. 23, 1863, he goes 
to St. Paul's church and sees the president and his 
staff, or cabinet, 24th he visits the War Department and 
finds Maj. Dodson reinstated and his own commission, 
gets some new clothes and visits the hospital, finds it in, 
charge of Dr. Dundly, of Palestine, Texas, goes to the- 
atre. On the 27th, he notes that the Yankees come 
within five miles of Richmond and skirmish with caval- 
ry, and on the 28th, the alarm was given and all took 
up arms, 3,000 men in arms, the department battallion 
visit the A. Q. M. to get some cloth, fails. 30 goes to 
Pittsburg, visits Mr. Geo. Griscom, then to Wilmington, 
stop at Rock Mound, says that tar is the principal prod- 
uct, and carts the principal transportation. Yankees 
had been there, Augusta after he leaves Charleston, 
where he is fired upon, stops at Planter's Hotel, and 
September 8th he visits the powder mill and says it 
turns out 900 pounds of powder each day and thus gives 
the formula 75 per cent nitre, 15 per cent coal and 10 
per cent sulphur, then back to Atlanta, goes to theater, 
says it is a poor thing, then to Montgomery, on leaving 
there the boat was small and a big crowd, Capt. Graves 
shoots a negro for sauciness, the soldiers takes Graves 
trom the police, on to Selma, sees the Q, M. Ordinance 
officer, Capt. Graves is arrested and carried to Mobile 
and reaches Meridian on Saturday, Sept. 12th, 1863, 
then to Brandon, where the Q. M. furnishes a wagon to 
Canton, Col. Quail is with him, at Canton he sends out 
for the ambulance at 12 o'clock, 16th Col. Jones and 
Col. Quail go out to camp. From this date to Oct. 28th, 

fHE GREA^ WAR. li 

he fills the space with scouts and picket duty all along 
Big Black, Clinton, Balton and Edwards Depot and 
Brownsville, when he notes that Gen. Whitfield has 90 
days furlough and goes to Texas, has his horse stolen, 
and on the 29th takes his departure. On Nov. 21st he 
notes that Augereye and I go to select a camp and see 
Gen. Jackson at Livingston, the only time I note of his 
using any slang or nickname. The scouting and picket 
duty was still kept up until about December the 20th, 
when we start out to carry some guns to the Trans- 
Mississippi Department. We move out on the 22nd of 
December. Monday June 16th, 1863, is sick, has the 
services of Dr. March, Col. Berry in command, June 
19, terrific firing at Vicksburg, Col. Rossis detached and 
retires, June 13th I finish the Voyages of Columbus, 
Oct. 20th reads DeAlbins, Nov. 8th read the Bible, 
Nov. 7th read DeAlbins Reformation, finish at 10 p. m., 
Reformation— 25th reads Nelson on Infidelity, Nov. 4th 
finishes Luthers Reformation, Nov. 18th read Romulus, 
22nd reads Deuteronomy, 23rd studies Wheeler. From 
July 5th to 14th he tells of the Federal's advance on 
Jackson, and from 15th to 20th tells of Jackson's raid to 
the Federal rear, July 24th he calls an assembly of the 
officers and resolutions are passed for the improvement 
of the regiment, July 28th inspection by Gen. Hardis, 
inspector naked horses and equipage. Tuesday August 
24th notes the Brigade gets whiskey at Benton, pours 
out the whiskey, Sept. 5th at Charleston sees the mam- 
moth gun and torpedo boat, goes to an island gets a fine 
view of the defences and blockading fleet, seven Moni- 
tors and Ironside Yankees fired upon them with battery, 
October 18th notes had a fight, captured seven prisoners 
and killed a few negroes, on the 19th he notes our men 
came in from Snadgrey whipped, Nov. 6th had a brush 
with Yankees, Capt. Dials' men got 100 blankets, 8th 
Evans and Trotter report, on 12th commences to write a 
history, on the 19th he notes the 6th Texas Cavalry 
have left us and Baggus crosses the river, Big Block is 


meant, November 25th bad news from Bragg, on 28th 
sits on examining board, 24th cross the river at Moors 
Bluff. December 20th got orders to get ready for the 
field, 2lst is spent in getting ready, 22nd pass through 
Brownsville and camp at Wiley, 23rd pass through 
Vernon camp near Moors Bluff, 24th commence to cross 
at 3 a. m., the 3rd goes by Goodman, the 6th and Le- 
gion cuts up a fuss, 25th move through Decentville 
camp near Lexington, 26th pass Lexington and Black 
Hunch camp near B. H., it rains, Dr. Stuart has an ad- 
venture, 27th pass Sedon and stop to cross at Bendox 
Ferry, Legion swims, 3rd crosses in boats, 28th, 6th 
crosses, then the 9th, the boat is sunk, nobody hurt, we 
raise it and let it float, all over at 9 o'clock, camp, 29th 
we march and camp at Martins all night, the Legion 
goes ahead to cross the river, 30th we take the march 
for Sunflower, the roads are in desperate condition, we 
swim the Sunflower river and camp out two miles, it 
rains all night, 31st it turns cold, snows, freezes and is 
extremely cold, our wagons come up, we remain in 
camp, January 1st, 1864, remain in camp, the Ordinance 
train is ordered back, can't go, Jones suggests consign 
the arms on the horses, his men agree, each man car- 
ries three guns, the roads frozen all the way, 3rd w© 
take the line of march, with guns strapped to our horses 
through the mud to Bogue Phalia, we cross and move 
out in the night, camp in the mud, 4th we move out at 
1:30 o'clock a. m. cross Dur Creek at Ruxege Bridge, 
then up the creek 8 miles, camp at Coutney's quarter, 
it rains all day, the ditches overflow, we are 7 miles 
from Greenville, on Mississippi river, January 5th the 
9th Texas was sent ahead as advance guard, it snows, 
we feed at Smith's Bridge, move out at dark, go to the 
river at Marlins quarter, haul a flat boat to the river 
with four yoke of oxen and succeed in crossing 266 
guns, the boat washed below, the men got wet, January 
6th after breakfast we start to where the flat landed, a 
Yankee boat passes. down, one up, we attack the Delta, 


we made her, we landed on the opposite side, we at- 
tempt to cross more guns but failed, we move out and 
camp near Black bridge, * 'freeze out," January 7th or- 
dered to move at a moments warning, lay in camp all 
day, horses saddled, January 8th move out at 3 o'clock 
a. m. and find we cannot cross, ordered back, lay in 
camp till 1 o'clock p. m., move out to the Mound place 
on William's Bugo, camp near Coplins, the 3rd were 
sent back to the river and left their guns, January 9th 
moved at 10 a. m. to Coutneys and remain all night, 
bitter weather, Friday January 10th, 1864, move at sun- 
rise, Jones commands 9th and Legion to carry the guns 
to the river and there with Capt. Alderson and five men 
to cross there. We leave the river at 1:30 o'clock p. m. 
and camp at Coplins. Sam (the negro) loses his star. 
11th move at sunrise and overtake the command at 
Buckner's bridge and feed, the Legion crosses at night, 
12th we cross Bogue Phalia after the Brigade and move 
through the bottom to our train, camp with the wagons, 
13th remain in camp till 10 o'clock a. m., move down 
the river to Johnston's farm, cross and camp, 14th we 
move on the Moma bridge road and camp at Martins, 
I put on clean clothes, 15th we move at 8 a. m. to Ho- 
ney Island and fine eamp near the Allen place, the reg- 
iments commence crossing. From this place the diary 
tells of our forced inarch via Sugarlach and Starkville 
to assist Forest, who is hard pressed by the enemy. 
We reach Ash Creek postoffice and learn of their route 
and turn back and thus ends his little diary, which is 
now old and yellow from exposure, and is with great 
difficulty decephered but enough of this is given to give 
the reader a fair insight into the nature of Col. Dud W* 


Chapter XIV. 

The reader will note that this writer has followed the 
diary of Col. Jones and will now speak of the events as 
recollected from his own observation. 

The march to Tennessee was long and muddy and 
over much road that was of clay and would work into 
ridges as all the horses would attempt to step in the 
same place and drag the mud, thus forming miles of 
ridges running across the road and the horses to clear 
them were forced to walk as if walking over logs, which 
was very straining on them, and greatly injured them, 
but we finally reached the Tennessee river and crossed 
at Florence on a ferry boat into a land of plenty. This 
writer thought it was a glorious country. There was no 
scarcity of provision or forage, corn or meat, not the 
stinted little pile of tythe corn, and the few thin bacon 
sides that we had been accustomed to see, but corn is 
plenty — great houses of corn, corn for sale for Confed- 
erate money, corn to feed to cavalry horses, corn for the 
mules, great houses of corn, and bacon shoulders, sides 
and hams, yes, enough of hams to get a full ration of 
ham for all — even the privates. Glorious country! 
Think of corn and fodder in plenty for 10,000 horses 
and red- spotted gravy for that number of hungry sol- 
diers that could be foraged in time for a camp of caval- 
ry in a country not previously prepared and you can 
form some idea of that glorious country. The praises 
of officers are still sung in bravery and doring and oc- 
casionally we see a word of commendation in honor of 
those who gathered subsistence, but this writer wants to 
record that executive ability of first order was always 

*Hfi GREAT WAR. 75 

shown by Van Dora's commissary of subsistence. His 
name is not now remembered but his fame, we private 
soldiers consider, should stand alongside with Napo- 
leon, Lee, Grant and others of like fame, but greatness 
in like matters is too soon to be forgotten, but all old 
soldiers of the corps, will bear testimony that, like old 
Van Dorn, he fought all that came in his way regardless 
of numbers, and his old A. Q. M. supplied all things 
that he could get regardless of expenses. 

After crossing the Tennessee river we had plenty, 
and our horses soon improved and our spirits soon be- 
came more buoyant, in short our effectiveness was 
never better. We had quite a number of little fights 
and were in a measure victorious, the most noted of 
which was at Thompson's Station. Our division, the 
Ross Brigade and Armstrong's Brigade then forming 
Jackson's division. Gen. Jackson was a big burly man, 
had red hair and beaird, and at that time looked to be 
about 40 years old and would weigh about 200 pounds 
and was possessed of a kind of military air that to us 
Texans was repulsion. He was always accompanied by 
his ''Orderly" who was to our views a servant, as we 
never saw him do anything but to wait on the General. 
He held his horse and assisted the General in mounting 
and dismounting and in many other things that we 
thought would be equally as well performed by a negro, 
and to our minds it savored of nobility a distinction dis- 
tasteful to us. So you see we had no love for our Ma- 
jor- General. 

At Thompson's station was the first general engage- 
ment that this writer ever had of observing him on the 

field and his department on that day "was so gallant and 
commanding, that all of our little dislikes were forgotten 
and his stock in our estimation rose out of sight, for 
from that day he was so endeared to us that we felt his 
orderly was occupying a post of honor for he proved 
himself a general equal to any task set before him, and 
we soon became convinced that there were not enough 
men north of the Mason and Dixon line to scare him. 


On the morning of that fight he was on the field and 
his encampment close enough to this writer to closely 
observe his movements- 

About daylight our videts were driven into the re- 
serve on the Franklin Pike and the information was 
brought by a courier, he spoke only a word to one of 
his aids and proceeded with his toilet for he was prepar- 
ing for his breakfast and his servant was brushing his 
coat. In a short time a courier from Gen. Armstrong 
informed him that the enemy was driving his pickets, 
only a word to one of his aids and he proceeded with his 
morning meal, a third courier arrived when he dis- 
patched his escort, and gave orders for the Texas Brig- 
ade to saddle up and leave the horses in line and move 
forward to a position about half a mile in advance, where 
we hid ourselves behind a stone fence with orders not 
to show ourselves and to hold our fire until we had or- 
ders. The skirmish was lively in front and it was not 
long before we could see them advancing and driving 
our skirmishers across the vaDey in front of us, we 
all wanted to see them and the officers had great diffi- 
culty in keeping the boys' heads down. One member 
of Co. I, 6th Tex. had managed to make a hole in the 
stone fence from which he told us of the movements. 
Let me see, cried half a dozen of the boys and in turn 
several of the boys looked, until finally one soldier ap- 
propriated the peep hole and refused to yield it on de- 
mand when the originator made a formal demand for 
the hole as his right and emphasized his claim with a 
strike at the usurper which led to a fight, both parties 
were arrested and removed to the ends of the company 
and guarded by a corporal, while we awaited orders to 
fire. Fire and charge came at the same time. A few 
moments later and the wrath of the soldiers was cooled 
in the general engagement. — See History 92, 93, 94, 95. 

There were many other engagements of more or less 
note but we were in good trim, well fed, and able to 
fight, and we let no good opportunity pass without a 


fight. There was much surprising of pickets and going 
into the enemies camp. Two of our brigade were caught 
at Franklin and shot by order of Garfield, who was af- 
terwards president of the United States. Other events 
of this campaign is well told in Rose's Brigade History, 
98, 99, 100, 101 and 102, and the reader will find much 
of interest. More especially Gen. Granger's effort to 
capture Van Dorn's corps and our hurried and bloody 
ride up Duck river and through the brakes. See Rose's 
History Brigade, page 98. 



Chapter XV. 

On our return to the old camp near Spring Hill Gen . 
Jackson had new flags made for his division and they 
were given to us near Spring Hill. The 4th regiment's 
flags were all alike and were adopted by order of Gen. 
Jackson and the same is now seen at our reunions and 
the flag of the 9th Texas is now in the hands of John 
Moreland at Cumby, Texas, held as custodian by order 
of the survivors of the brigade. 

After the death of Gen. Van Dora the corps was 
broken up. The Texas Brigade, and the Brigades of 
Cosby and Furguson formed a division under Jackson 
and were ordered to Mississippi and Gen. Forest with 
the other Division remained in Tennessee. 

A long march through a devastated country was the 
result and a month later we were in the vicinity of the 
doomed city — Vicksburg. The name itself suggests to 
the mind of our old brigade hard service and bloodshed. 
We encamped for a few days on the river near the town 
of Canton, a distance of probably 30 miles and could 
hear the roar of the battle, both cannon and small arms, 
a fact that will be questioned by many for it is not be- 
lieved that musketry could be heard to so great a dis- 
tance, but so it was, we heard it. A terrible roar and 
the distinct sound of cannon, and another curious thing 
of that fight was that the artillery at Vicksburg was 
heard in Franklin county, Texas, a distance of at least 
300 miles. Vicksburg has been called the slaughter 
pen of the Confederacy. The reason this writer will 
not attempt, but strange it may appear to some, simple 
it may be to the wise, but one of the problems of the 


war that probably may never be revealed is why the 
cities of Memphis and New Orleans were surrendered 
with so little blood and Vicksburg with her defences the 
cause of so much bloodshed. Memphis was taken with 
small loss. New Orleans was surrendered with less 
than 300 men in killed, while the reports show that our 
losses were 54,415 men killed, wounded and prisoners in 
the defences of Vicksburg, an army that was larger than 
were ever at and time assembled under any one of our 

It was on the 3rd day of June, 1863, that we com- 
menced picket duty in front of Vicksburg. It was fight- 
ing every day — sometimes a detachment or a company 
or a regiment, but it was fighting every day. We lost 
heavily in killed and wounded in small engagements 
that never had a name in history, but on July 4th the 
9th and Legion fight the enemy at Messenger's Ferry. 
The 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, and 
14th falling; back to Jackson, and on that evening a 
cavalry raid was started to the enemy #/ s rear under Gen. 
Jackson about 2,000 strong and move around by forced 
marches, and on the 16th the brigade is divided and the, 
9th and 3rd Texas take Brownsville and Bolton, and 
Ross with the 6th and Legion take Clinton. The 9th 
and 3rd capture 85 prisoners including 6 officers, 11 
wagons and 2 ambulances, which caused some delay, 
as the command was to reunite at Vernon at 12 o'clock, 
and on the 17th about ten miles from Canton attack a 
large train. They open upon us with a battery, we then 
move to Canton, burn the depot and retire across the 
river at some shoals ford and encamp and so continues 
the services throughout the summer and winter of '63 
and earlv in '64 after crossing the guns to Arkansas as 
before said, we start for Georgia. 


Chapter XVI. 

Thus far in our campaigns we have had some notes — 
meagre they were but their assistance has kept up the 
dates to a reasonable correctness but it is from memory 
alone I now write. 

After disposing of the guns as before stated in Jan. 
1864 we set out on a slow march halting and counter- 
marching between Central and M. O. railroads until 
about the middle of February we were near Tuscaloosa, 
Ala., from which place a detachment was sent into the 
northern counties to drive out some Bushwhackers that 
were annoying all parties within their limit. It was a 
dull march and all the enemy we encountered were only 
a few at a place, for they wisely scattered on our ap- 
proach and we found none to direct us, however, we 
succeeded in a measure but many laughable scenes are 
still recollected in the search for offenders. They were 
hidden by their women who were not slow to give us a 
piece of their minds and mostly a good large piece and 
convenient they would emphasize that opinion with a 

On one occasion it was made known that a small num- 
ber of those men were housed up near our camp and a 
detachment was duly sent out to bring them in. On 
knocking at the door the officer was informed that there 
was no one at home but some helpless woman. The 
officer assured them of perfect safety but informed them 
that his duty 'compelled him to make search in the house 
for men. They still refused to open the door and the 
officer ordered it knocked from the hinges. Two men 
were ordered in to strike a light while the remainder 


stood outside ready to protect them. The room was 
large and appeared to have been constructed for a 
schoolhouse and on striking a ligh it revealedt four bed- 
steads, each appearing to contain two persons, a lot of 
dresses and shoes were to be seen, but no pants, 
some of the shoes were extra large, one pair of heavy 
leather about No. ll's was mentioned by the searcher, 
upon which, one of the inmates a woman arose in bed 
saying, "them's my shoes and you just let them alone 
and get out of here." The soldier insisted that they 
were the shoes of a man ; that no woman wore so large 
a shoe, especially so delicate a lady as was speaking to 

This appeared to rouse her worser nature and she left 
the bed pretending to show him her foot, but when that 
member was firmly set on the floor, she dealt him a 
right-hander full in the face that would have done 
credit to either Corbett or Fitzsimmons. The blow near- 
ly stunned him for it was unexpected hard and full in 
the face, blinding and dazing him. He staggered, re- 
covered and apparently thought for a moment, then in a 
businesslike way he quietly called upon God and all 
present to witness that he made no war upon women 
and affirmed that his good right arm should always be 
used to protect women but finally wound up by swearing 
that no living person should treat him thus and go un- 
punished upon which he dealt her a blow in the pit of 
the stomach that laid her flat on the floor. All rushed 
in and the sequel revealed three women and five men. 


Chapter XVII. 

After remaining in camp on the river below Tusca- 
loosa, Ala., for some days three comrades of 3rd Texas 
were drowned at a fish trap. After our scout for Bush- 
whackers in North Alabama, we set out east on a long 
and wearisome march through a poor country occupying 
many days, our officers were very rigid in their discip- 
line, General Jackson's orders were very stringent, and 
much of the time he kept quite a lot of the men walking 
and keeping the Provo Guard busy guarding those 
walking and leading horses, those walking were suffer- 
ing penalties for disobedience in riding off from their 
ranks. This writer walked for three days and had an 
opportunity of examining the soil over which we passed 
and he pronounced it poor and rocky, much of it unfit 
for cultivation and was mostly settled with a very poor 
class of farmers. We crossed the Coosa river on a rail- 
road bridge. In course of time passed through Gadsden. 
It looked to be a good town but I could never tell what 
use the people had for a town in that poor country. 
While we encamped for the night at Gadsden I had oc- 
casion to call at a dwelling house near by the camp and 
on my entry into the house a little negro girl seemed to 
be about 12 or 14 years old gathered me around the 
neck crying "Lord Mars Tommie" I knowed you would 
come tonight "Mistis Mars Tommie's come" and so she 
kept hugging and swinging to my neck and I could not 
get shut of her. An old lady walked in but the negro 
girl still held me around the neck endeavoring to kiss 
me all over the face and neck. I finally succeeded in 
putting her off with force and stood before the old lady 


very much embarrassed. I wanted to get some thread 
to mend my clothing but so bad was my scare that I 
really forgot my mission. I suppose the girl was crazy. 
From here we passed over the spurs of the mountain 
and I bought some cloth and stopped on the roadside 
and got some pants made, they were greatly needed, and 
with the work of a couple of women between the setting 
and rising sun were made by hand. During the latter 
part of this journey feed was very scarce, one night we 
had nothing for our horses. We were glad to reach a 
little place called Powder Springs for we learned that 
we were now in Georgia. 

Our next encampment of note was near Rome at 
which place we met the enemy and had a severe fight, 
the 3rd and 9th Texas suffering most. I think we lost 
about 150 men in killed and wounded, and as we were 
so far from home our ranks were not refilled and our 
losses told in the fighting numbers of our brigade from 
this to the end of the war. Here we held the field and 
encamped for several days, the enemy giving us but 
light skirmishes. This I think, was March 7th, 1864, 
and was the commencement of our Georgia campaign, 
which I think, was 112 days long, as I recollect that 
% Gen. L. Sol Ross, I think about the battle of Jonesboro, 
in one of his orders read to us of the service in that 
state which was that we had been in the state of Geor- 
gia 112 days and during that time had fought 108 pitch 
battles and had captured 3,000 prisoners, 4,000 stand of 
arms, 8 pieces of artillery and 12 stand of colors, and on 
entering the state we mustered something over 1,700 
men and at the date on which the order was read we 
then had something over 700 men rank and file. This 
is from memory, but I believe that many of our com- 
rades will recall in mind the order and I think it is ap- 
proximately correct, and hope that these may call forth 
a copy of the original order. 

While at Rome I learned that we were on the extreme 
left of Gen. Johnston's army of the west. Ross* Texas 


Brigade and Armstrong's Mississippi Brigade with some 
other small squads of cavalry formed Jackson's Divis- 
ion of cavalry and Gen. Forest with Wheeler and other 
commands were on the extreme right. Army facing 
the advancing enemy north, and the divisions of infan- 
try forming the lines between us and the cavalry. 

In a few days we witnessed the first great movement. 
All was still in our front but the wagons with baggage 
were moving to the rear, and preparations were made to 
quickly burn the two bridges spanning the two little 
rivers whose waters flowed on two sides of Rome. Ear- 
ly in the morning the lines of the enemy were advanced 
and our skirmishers kept things warm for them and the 
brigade kept in line ready for the fight and the rattle of 
musketry and the boom of cannon told of the general 
movement all along the line. We fell back and then 
stuck fire to one of the brigades and now we were in the 
town. Merchants with doors opened and soldiers sup- 
plying themselves with things of which we stood in need 
and a great amount of things that were of no possible 
use to us. I got a fine supply of tobacco, quite as much 
as I had the room to carry, and on leaving the town I 
recollect that quite a number of soldiers wore high top 
stove pipe hats, and when we were grouped the assem- 
bly resembled a colored conference that I witnessed 
a quarter of a century later, we moved out and burned 
the other bridge, for several days we skirmished along 
a crooked creek, called Pumpkin Vine. 
. Fi^ht and fall back was the order and I thought there 
was more fighting than falling back, but just as soon as 
we left one hill to take a position on the next, the one left 
was occupied by the enemy, shot and shell were at all 
times in the air. 

Near a little place called Burnet Hickory I recollect 
some who came to our line on the road and told us a 
pittiful story of wrongs and indignities that they had 
suffered only a short time before our arrival. And here 
we commenced a fight which continued and we were 


driven before a strong force of infantry for some miles * 
disputing every inch of the ground. Gen. Ross had a 
horse shot here, while directing, the planting of a bat- 
tery. I was up a small tree locating a gun that was shell- 
ing our line with the General's field glass in my hand 
and an officer or two were under the tree on horseback 
when the shot hit him from a sharpshooter far out at 
flank. Bill Moore was sent with our company to dis- 
lodge them. He found them in force and we had a 
sharp bout, and the engagement soon became general 
and continued in fury, without ceasing until the hard 
fought battle of New Hope church, lasting 3 days about 
May 25th, 26th and 27th. We were driven all day. I 
have no idea how far to New Hope church we were, when 
a heavy line of Infantry was seen in our rear formed with 
some hastily constructed breastworks which stood at 
nearly a right angle to the way the enemy were driving 
us. We fought along the line for some distance as our 
line deflected to our left and the engagement was hot on 
Cleaburns left wing before we retired through a gap be- 
tween two commands and dismounted and lay down for 
the night. The fighting was terrible to a late hour in 
the night, a bloody field was the result. 
\ In this position we lay for many days and the infantry 
quickly constructed breastworks and the enemy did 
likewise and soon two yellow banks of earth told of the 
line of the contending armies which were occupied 
about a week or ten days when the enemy swung around 
our left and within another week our left rested on last 
mountain, then to the right and after considerable fight- 
ing our right fell back to the Kenesaw mountain when 
again our lines were strongly fortified and the enemy 
taking advantage of some sharp ravines succeeded un- 
der cover of night to dig ditches very close to our lines 
in some places near enough to swap tobacco by tossing 
it over into the enemy's pits. For a long while both 
armies lay still and the Yankees in some places dug 
mines under our works and blew them up but with no 


success. It was here that Gen. Polk was killed, and I 
afterwards learned that the news of his death was writ- 
ten on a bayonet and thrown over into the enemy's line. 
As our brigade was now in works not far distant I could 
go over to see the mountain works when not on duty. 

Our horses were left in the rear with a detail who 
cared for them and we took the trenches as did the 
infantry. Our rations were cooked and served to us at 
night by soldiers detailed for that purpose and consisted 
of one pone of corn bread baked without sifting and a 
small slice of bacon to each. 

This writer has neglected to tell of a circumstance 
that occurred sometime about the first of the year, 1864. 
As the Confederate States were hard pressed some 
power not known to me established at Euphala, Ala., a 
hospital for disabled men from Texas, and the Ross 
Brigade set about aiding in its maintainance and D. W. 
Jones, Colonel of the 9th Texas Cavalry, to this end or- 
ganized "The Lone Star Band" of ten men — one from 
each company — and when the order was received it ap- 
peared that it was understood, that from our company 
"Blank" was the detail and I will here say that music- 
ians belonged to the Infirmary Corps but we Texans 
kept all men in line of battle and never excused even 
the Infirmary Corp only when in active labor on the 
field hospital. The opposing armies met on May 25 in 
general engagement at New Hope, as before said, and 
the battle raged until late at night, and the Ross Brigade 
lay in a gap connecting two commands of the infantry. 
Just in front of us the field was bloody and all night 
long the pick and shovel flew in the construction of 
breast works and the morning showed the line of battle 
in a long yellow line of earth works. 

About daylight orders come to send Blank to report to 
Dr. Robertson for duty. Mounted, and forthwith he 
repaired to the rear, mounted his horse (Mountain Bill) 
and about one and half miles further to the rear he 
came upon Drs. Robertson, March and others at a 


grave filled with wounded. He duly reported, and 
his horse was taken and harnessed to an ambulance and 
he, after getting his breakfast, was put to work building 
an arbor, meantime the battle roared in the distance 
and ambulances were discharging the wounded almost 
constantly. About 10 o'clock on the 26th, Dr. Robert- 
son ordered Blank to take a dead man out and bury 
him. How? where? were questions asked, and were 
answered: Any way decent, and at any suiatble place. 
Two of the men laid the dead soldier on a wide plank 
one at either end, and carried him a short way from the 
Arbor and with much labor succeeded in making a 
grave, there buried his body. Hot, tired and hungry 
he returned and to his surprise Dr. Robertson spoke 
of our unnecessary delay in the work and at once put 
him to assisting in the construction of some strong scaf- 
folds to be used as operating tables. Steady posts were 
cut from sapling oaks and driven into the ground and 
cross pieces nailed to them at the directed height, then 
planks laid on those pieces to form the tables, others 
continued that new graveyard who had more exper- 
ience and soon had a ditch wide enough to hold a sold- 
iers body placed crosswise and as they died they were 
intered as the ditch was dug and at the same time filled 
on those before buried, a great economy in labor greatly 
needed for in that graveyard thus started in a less time 
that 20 days. There were more than 700 then intered. 
But after finishing the tables to the satisfaction of Dr. 
Robertson, Blank was ordered to go to "Old Charlie, " 
the cook, and get a lot of parched coffee and take the 
same to a house and grind it for use of the wounded. 
Blank got the coffee, about a gallon in an old flour 
sack, damp from recent rains, and duely walked to the 
house as directed. He was shown an old wornout mill 
nailed to the wall in the kitchen and proceeded to grind, 
a job Blank never forget while I knew him. The han- 
dle of the mill had been split off and only the wire 
served as a handle. Wet coffee won't grind and the 


old slick mill haggled and chewed and Blank turned 
until after dark, then returned to the camp in no fine 
mood with about half the coffee mashed and ground, as 
it passed from the old mill. 

Dr. Robertson was worried and mad. He gave Blank 
some short plain talk that enkindled in the heart of 
Blank a hatred that conquered his heart and for Dr. 
Robertson he held no love but was compelled to do his 
bidding without murmur which he resolved to bear to 
the end, his heart become morose and he only answered 
back with a look of defiance. 

Dr. James Robertson was a native of Virginia and 
was entitled by birth and rank to F. F. V. A. A degree 
in society realized only by those distinguished person- 
ages from that historic state. He was a gentleman of 
the old school trained from infancy in those peculiar 
traditions of that state which admitted no superiors, and 
only men of like training as equals, as a man kind 
hearted and generous to his equals and at the same time 
unapproachable to his inferiors, a man of quick temper 
and cold austere nature, his religion, Catholic, his poli- 
tics were at all times, set forth in the "Richmond Whig" 
in habit he was usually correct, though he sometimes 
drank a little free, in manners he was lofty, in conversa- 
tion pedastic and in appearance dignified and cross. 

In his profession he was at the top, his opinion was 
received as law, they were never disputed, as a surgeon 
he was the best, no man handled the knife and saw with 
a nerve so steady, and none equaled him in neatness 
and dispatch, he was untiring in energy and industrious 
in life, he either did all the talking or none of it, he 
spoke only a few words to his associates and they were 
all to the point, his mind was made up quickly and from 
his judgment he never swerved, and last but not least 
he was a chronic grumbler. 

He enlisted a private, was appointed a surgeon, bis 
advance was steady and at this time ranking Major and 
senior surgeon general in the corps. 

the great war. 89 

After supper the nurses were told off into watches for 
the night, two nurses to be up at the time to attend the 
wounded and the others to rest until their appointed 

Dr. Robertson had his cot prepared and retired early, 
and Blank, with the other nurses, prepared to make his 
spread when the Dr. called to Blank and told him to 
spread his blanket down by the side of his cot, when he 
could be had if wanted, the blanket was spread and he 
retired wondering if he was to be the personal property 
of the Dr. or was he still a soldier, sleep found him in 
the same wonder. During the night the Dr. called 
Blank ! Blank ! ! Blank ! ! ! I do wish that I could ever 
get a man that had sufficient brain capacity to sleep 
with his head. Blank! Blank!! Blank!!! but that is 
the way with all short men have got as much sensibility 
in the foot as he has in his head, Blank! Blank!! 
and he sleeps in a knot and every faculty of his nature 
are wound together as in a ball around the mind if he 
has a mind, is the nucleus, and center of the ball. 
Blank! Blank!! Blank !!! all short men are the same 
way, but I suppose he is tired too. Blank get up and 
bring a light and let us try to stop the blood from that 
fellow's leg. Look in the pannier and get me the chlo- 
roform, I will fix the bonnet, hurry up. 

Such was about what he heard on awakening and in- 
creased his wonder, but up and the light was soon at 
hand and the Doctor made a more thorough examina- 
tion of the bleeding wound, then shook his head saying, 
we can do nothing, and back to our bunks we went. 
On getting up the following morning he found the nurses 
had not called for him during the night and he spoke of 
it apologizingly, but the Doctor said you were not 

This was ever afterwards the same Blank slept in 
easy reach of the Doctor and was only disturbed at 
night by the Doctor in person. 

The battle still raged and the day was put in at the 


operating table, the Doctor using Blank as though he 
was trained to the business, and when he was awkward 
was sure to get a sharp rebuke. That evening while the 
Doctor and his assistant were taking off a leg and Blank 
in curiosity, while holding the bonnet was watching the 
subjects eyes while under the influence of chloriform 
and as expressions changed the Doctor stormed "take it 
away, you have killed him," and down he laid the 
knife and commenced a heavy and rapid manipulation 
in the patient's stomach. He was restored but Blank 
was frightened almost to death. Thus days passed to 
weeks, nothing pleasant from the service, and no kind 
word from the Doctor, Blank felt his littleness and 
worthlessness. It was on the eve of the second day 
Whit Philips, of Third Texas, was brought in wounded, 
gunshot through the body. The Doctor laid him down 
on the table and cut out the big ball from the back and 
with the ball came a piece of the leather strap, gunstring 
and a piece of a checked shirt that had passed with the 
ball through his body. Whit was suffering terribly and 
some instruments were needed that we did not have and 
none were nearer than Marietta, at the medicine pur- 
verors' office and must be brought in the shortest possi- 
ble time and there was some talk among the Doctors and 
nurses about who should go, but the matter was brought 
to a short conclusion when Dr, Robertson quietly said 
Blank is to go. 

It was nearly sundown and the horse belonged to Jack 
Philips — a fine sorrel horse, and the only word Jack said 
was, "he will last you back." Blank mounted and the 
Doctor said, as he gave him his letter, "don't stay until 
they are all dead." On the back of the letter was writ- 
ten : "Important, no delay," and as he rode out Dr. 
March held his watch and called out "time off." To 
Lost Mountain and to Marietta was a long gallop. A 
good summer rain fell and a sharp fight was noted as 
he went down. On reaching the purveyor's office at 
Marietta he rode up to his tent and delivered his letter 


and without a moment's delay, he handed him the box 
of instruments with the envelope of the letter carried. 
Just at this time a servant of the purveyor's office was 
taking some bread from a skillet and Blank asked for 
some of it. Yes, said the Purveyor, and drink this, 
handing a cup of spirits which served greatly to refresh 
him and off to the hospital he rode. The horse was ap- 
parantly jodded and required some urging. The roads 
were fine. Near Lost Mountain during the evening a 
raiding party had ran into our lines and had burned 
some wagons which were now burning. A few dead 
men and horses showed that there had been some fight- 
ing. The horse was giving down but on he urged, it 
was dark, and the dead were more plentiful. Some 
were in the road. The horse jumped over an object in 
the road and a poor wounded man cried out: "Oh my 
God, don't ride over a dying man." The voice was un- 
der the horse, it scared the animal and gave him new 
life and he continued his journey, and as he delivered 
the box Dr. March called out 11:40. Fifty miles in five 
hours is the best on record. 

Blank could not dismount for his long ride had par* 
alyzed his body and he sat helpless. Blanket the horse 
and let him stand twenty minutes, then give him a 
little water and some green feed, only a few bites, com- 
manded Dr. Robertson, "but first look to the man com- 
manded Dr. March" they took him down and placed 
him on a blanket, gave him a dram and he went to 
sleep. He was up the next morning but very stiff and 

Dr. Rcbertson was fond of entertaining his friends 
and they drank freely and when it w^s found that the 
supply of spirits had run down the Doctor never failed 
to insinuate that Blank had drank it. Blank's heart 
was filled with bitterness towards him in retaliation and 
considered the Doctor's insinuations law flung. 

In course of time the wounded were sent to Atlanta 
and other hospitals and it was known that we were to 


fall back. We had some that could not be moved, 
among them one poor fellow that could not swallow, 
that Blank had been giving sustainance to through a 
piece of bark that he had slipped from a sprout and in r 
serted into his stomach through which he poured water 
and soup, and another "Claib Rigsby" that had a gun- 
shot wound through the lungs and could not lie down 
had to sit up and Blank had constructed a kind of 
perch pole upon which his teeth were hung as he eat, 
leaning forward to rest and sleep and upon which his 
teeth had hung day and night for many days while from 
another upright a small gourd supplied a drip of water 
sufficient to keep the bandages wet and cool, from a 
small hole in the bottom trained to fit and fall on the 
wound (will here say to the doctors who may read these 
pages that cool water was all the dressing that they 
used for many days). 

As some of these wounded had to be left, nurses were 
to be left with them and as a matter of course would be 
taken prisoners and when relieved sent north to "camp 
chaise" which they regarded as a polite name for shoal. 

Accordingly lots were cast, and it fell to Blank to be 
left a prisoner. Blank felt relieved at the fate of for- 
tune and the wounded felt glad for Blank was their 
favorite and he felt that in a northern prison he might 
suffer more in body, but in mind he felt it would be a 
great relief, for his hatred to Dr. Robertson had grown 
with his services and he now regarded that officer as a 
cold scientific machine actuated by a philosaphic apara- 
tus that served him as life, and he felt that the Doctor 
regarded him as a worthless, thieving, idiot, unworthy 
of the least consideration. 

On the morning of the evacuation the Doctors had all 
arrangements made as the line formed up Dr. Robert- 
son asked who is to be left among you. One of the 
nurses told him that we had cast lots and that Blank 
was to be left. Dr. Robertson sat on his horse still one 
moment, then let his eye pass down the line of faces, 


and his eye met the eye of Blank, there was something 
in that look that had never been seen before, it was not 
the eye of cold Dr. Robertson, it was an eye that Blank 
had never before seen, and spoke to the heart of Blank 
in a language the mouth knows not. Dr. Robertson 
said Blank will do no such thing but will go with me, and 
ordered Blank to get into the ambulance beside the 
driver, and to go along with the "doctors." It is need- 
less to say Blank was surprised, a change came over his 
heart, his hatred vanished like a morning frog, for there 
he first learned of the true Dr. Robertson. 

On the other hand many years later the doctor's esti- 
mate of Blank was given to the medical board assem- 
bled in Hopkins county on an occasion when Dr. T. J. 
Lynch had Blank carried before that body for examina- 
tion as to qualification in handling drugs in Dr. Lynch's 
office. Dr. Robertson was the president, and when 
Blank went before the body, after greeting him cordi- 
ally, introduced him to the doctors by saying, that the 
doctors present could examine to their full satisfaction, 
but he would say from personal knowledge gained in a 
long period of hospital work with Blank that he was 
fully competent to perform any duty that he would un- 
dertake safe, and conservative, he had found him faith- 
ful and just, moral and upright and one of the best, if 
not the best unprofessional help he had ever had in his 
long experience in hospital work. 

The examination was light but to the satisfaction of 
all concerned. 

I have written this chapter to demonstrate one of the 
great mistakes of life as in the experience of Blank. 
How great was his mistake, how putrid the heart, how 
hard the services, when considered unappreciative, and 
rendered in hatred to a military despot, shielded by a 
military mask that hid all of a better nature. 

How pleasant and even joyous the same task when 
performed under the loving fatherly direction of the 
kind manly and ripened wisdom of those whom we 


serve. Such is the personal of Blank and the greatest, 
wisest and best of our army surgeons. May he sleep in 
eternal peace. Such are Blank's feelings towards Dr. 
Jas. E. Robbertson. 

Now here we append this moral good 
As together here we prod our way; 
Let love shine in our soldierhood, 
As a light to the coming day. 

— Blank. 


Chapter XVIII. 


I had neglected to tell you in the last chapter the 
finale of our hospital as told by Blank. After all of the 
wounded were moved off except only a very few, that 
had any hopes of recovery and one of the nurses was 
left to care for them. Knowing that they would soon 
fall into the hands of the enemy we supposed that all 
had died or been taken north. 

Great was our surprise some three or four weeks later 
when on one warm evening up drove an ox wagon and 
two of the wounded we had left on a rude bed that had 
been constructed of leaves and blankets and our nurse 
stepping along by the side of a boy that was driving. 
On making inquiry, all had died but four after we had 
left there and when the Yankees come up they never 
paroled or molested any of them, and as two of them 
were from Georgia and got able to help themselves he 
had placed them in some houses nearby with citizens, 
then he got a wagon and put Dave and Claib (two Tex- 
ans Ross' Brigade), in it and brought them up and paid 
the boy for the wagon and team in stores and utensals 
that he had left at the hospital. They were forwarded 
on to Atlanta and the nurse fell into ranks. 

This illustrates the great resources grasped by illiter- 
ate but determined soldiers, there was no faults in the 
make up. 

Some one has said that we are the creatures of cir- 
cumstance, and circumstance shall be the apology for 



the digression r in the thread of this recollection for 
nothing created can be less faulty than its creater. 

I believe I told you that in time we fell back to the 
Kenisaw Mountains, well we did, yet I believe most of 
writers ignore that fact but I will tell you that the 
ground was torn up all along, earth works here and 
there, and will here say there was no large tract of land 
west of the railroad from Burnet Hickory to Atlanta 
but what had been stained with blood. 

The infantry were always digging works and moving 
and again digging and I recollect while near Kenisaw 
that the infantry had been moving to the right and we 
were moved up and occupied their vacated works and 
skirmished all day, at night were moved still further 
towards the right in the ditches and were halted and all 
halts meant rest and rest is always better in sleep and 
I did enjoy sleep. We were not allowed to speak above 
a whisper and (Jody Candle) and I agreed to a small 
sleep, we lay down, I went to sleep and it seemed to me 
that during that sleep some one whispered forward to 
the right but I heeded not, sleep was too good. 

Sometime later I was awakened by soldiers coming 
into the works and talking in low tones, it was very 
dark, but instinct told me who they were. I raised up 
and stepped off and as I went I heard the word Halt ! 
Halt! By this time I was running, I knew not where, 
and the further I run the more frightened I become, un- 
til at last I come to a farm without fence (war farms 
soon loose the fence) and in it I could see a wagon and 
some soldiers. After a little I saw they were issuing 
ordinance and had at times a dim light, but I knew none 
of them, but thought that they were Confederates,, so I 
walked up and asked a soldier for the Ross Brigade, he 
looked at me strangely and said, why have you 
gone crazy? Such was the effect of the scare that I 
did not know my own messmate to whom I was speak- 
ing. Daylight soon come and found us on a high hill to 
the left of the Kenisaw Mountain, in front of a heavy 


line of infantry, moving on us. There were a large 
number of cannons planted on the hill and with the early 
morning opened a heavy cannonade with shell which we 
could see bursting back of their line. The officer in 
charge of the guns next to me would say place some 
more the same, then just to the right, and so on, which 
I watched with curious interest for as I saw they did no 
damage to the line but on its getting lighter I could see 
other lines behind the first one. A little after sun up 
they moved on to us, I could see them coming up the 
hill in front for fully half a mile to the left and several 
miles on the right ten miles of battle deep, on they come 
colors flying, bands playing and soldiers with bright 
guns and fixed bayonets, all at a "right- shoulder shift' ' 
skirmishers only a few steps in advance and they did all 
the shooting, their batteries at intervals advancing and 
firing. It was a most wonderful sight to behold, more 
than 60,000 men in sight moving as only trained sol- 
diers can move. They moved like a blue cloud arising. 
Our batteries were working, our lines of skirmishers 
were run in and at about 600 yards we gave them our 
first volley. The lines would quiver, but only for a 
second double charge with grape and conister was 
^ heard from the batteries, another volley from our rifles 
at about 300 yards showed a tremble like a handful of 
shot thrown into a stream, no effect. The din was ter- 
rible, the smoke soon made things dark, the whole sky 
was clouded with smoke and the sun looked as a huge 
ball of fire but its rays were obstructed before they 
touched the earth. The man next to me was shot in the 
thigh and fell with a groan. 

I felt glad when my officer ordered me to assist him to 
the ambilance a short distance in the rear. I had not 
gone far before I saw that our batteries were withdraw- 
ing and by the time I had my man stowed away I joined 
my command in the retreat and then I realized that 
Sherman had taken our position with but one line of his 
men firing upon us. I was discouraged. I had really 


seen an army and only once in life. Our next halt was 
in the hills across the river from Atlanta, I suppose a 
distance of 12 or 14 miles from that city and I do not 
know that the army of the west made a stand but it was 
many days before we crossed the little river Chatahoo- 
chie. We were on the left side of the railroad from 
Atlanta to Rome, and a few miles out from the river. 
Jackson's division fortified a hill that was nearly round 
and there we stayed with no infantry support on our 
right. I suppose this was done to hold Sherman's army 
in check until the army had crossed over the river but 
we had all things made ready and our lines well fortified 
good rifle pits in advance for our picket line and the 
enemy well in front. It was here we fought for five or 
six days on a bloody field that in the annals of history 
has no name. It was here that one of my comrades was 
wounded while he was in the rifle pit with me, and 
there was no connection with the main force of our 
Brigade only in the night. We went on duty after dark 
and remained until the next night before we were re- 
lieved. Our pit was made of fence rail3 that met at an 
angle on a small oak tree, I suppose 8 or 10 inches in 
diameter. I was on duty in this same pit after helping 
to construct it and was on duty in the pit w hen the oak 
toppled over, after having been cut in two with only 
small arms. Minnie balls constantly digging into the 
tree cut it so that it turned to one side but was not cut 
from the stump. 

It was on this post where Mat Millerford was shot 
through the foot. We had been fighting all the morn- 
ing and our guns had got dirty and hot and our custom 
was to pour some water from the canteen into the gun 
and churn with the rammer, then pour it out and pop 
a cap on the tube to clean them. Water was scarce and 
we could get no more until after dark and we concluded 
to let our guns cool and sat ourselves down in the pit to 
talk and await the cooling, which is a slow process in 
hot weather. Mat lay down on his back and elevated 


his foot a little too high and a Yankee sent a ball 
trough it. It must have hurt terribly for Mat was very- 
sick and pale, but he neither grunted or groaned, but 
suffered agonies that it would take a medical man to ex- 
plain. I bound his foot up with a piece of his shirt and 
wet the wound from the scant supply of water in the 
canteens and used both guns the remainder of the day. 
Mat got well and come back to Texas and when I last 
met him he was a "preacher." 

Late in the evening just about dusk a Yank called out 
to our line, "Johnnies" lets rest "all right" was returned 
then all was still for probably an hour, and in their 
works or just back of them they had some sort of 
speaking as it was more than 100 yards from our pit I 
could not get the thread of the discourse but thought 
it was preaching and I climbed to the top of the pit and 
was sitting on the high bank of earth fanning with my 
hat and listening I noticed nearly all Ross' Brigade 
picket at the same. A few feet in front of me on the 
ground I happened to notice something move and at 
once began to make a scramble to get back into the pit 
when just at that time a line of Yanks rose up and each 
one of them commenced pelting us with stones, we fell 
off them pits and gave them a volley from our guns, 
they ran back to their works and resumed the old rou- 
tine of constant firing. Relief came and our lines were 
withdrawn to the main line of works which were sur- 
rounded and stormed from nearly all quarters on the 
following morning and Jackson's Division of cavalry 
left a hot and bloody field that has never had the honor 
of a name. Armstrong's Brigade was on our right and 
having a fearful time, and we heard a yell of the Yanks 
that told that they had taken a part of his line. Col. 
Jones on Ross' right dispatched this writer to Gen. Ross 
informing him of the fact that Armstrong's works on 
the right were taken and that the Yanks were driving 
them upon us. I was not more than three or four hun- 
dred yards to the left. I found Gen. Ross watching the 


workings of our little Alabama battery and directing its 
play. He was in the open field and as I rode up he 
reined his horse to meet me and with a salute I deliv- 
ered Col. Jones' verbal dispatch. Just at this time a 
cannon ball passed between the two horses and so close 
to my horse, (Mountain Bill) that it injured his eyes. 
He never saw well after this. Ross, if it excited him in 
the least, I could not detect it, his order was to immedi- 
ately present his compliments to Gen. Armstrong and 
tell him to hold his position. 

Well I thought it a hot time for the exchange of com- 
pliments but it was military. Back I went at top speed 
and before I found Gen. Armstrong I ran into the federal 
lines and was called upon to halt, back I fled to get out 
of their range which was obstructed by a pine- top in a 
few jumps and it is needless to say that Ross 5 dispatch 
was delivered to Gen. Armstrong later that day several 
miles to the rear of that position. 

We crossed Chatahoochie river just above old Sand- 
town, on a pantoon bridge and encamped in the hills 
beyond and placed pickets at all the crossings and 
along the river from the railroad down to the mouth of 
the Sweetwater. The enemy were fighting on the ex- 
treme right and nearer to Atlanta. Long before we 
crossed in a few days after this the famed McCook's 
cavalry raid crossed at Sandtown, and started to our 
rear. Shortly after dark they came down to the river 
and commenced laying their pantoons and our officers 
were immediately informed of their movements for our 
outpost was within 300 yards of the pantoon and I do 
not think that there was an hour during the night that 
communications were not sent to our headquarters. The 
pickets were not relieved until after 4 o'clock a. m. 
and the command was on its way after them when we 
joined our company. Two men now living were on that 
post that night and can testify to the truthfulness of the 
above which I have written, especially as I have heard 
it said and read that Gen. Jackson did not know of Mc- 


Cook's raid until he had a day the start of him, but 
Gen. Jackson knew as well as did McCook all of his 
movements and the Ross Brigade were in Palmetto Sta- 
tion by eight o'clock after they had left about 4 o'clock 
that morning and by 10 o'clock we were fighting them. 
They burned everything in their way. Some quarter- 
master's wagons belonging to Gen. M. D. Ectors' Bri- 
gade were among the burned. We followed them all 
day and into the night when they met some obstruction 
and turned back further west. We fought them on the 
turn and tallowed them all night fighting all the way 
and by daylight had them well on the run. I recollect 
at a large creek called Flint river they set fire to the 
bridge and erected some breastworks of rails to keep us 
from extinguishing the flames. Thev left a company to 
hold the bridge, but some one found a way a little above 
the bridge and Col. Jones with the Ninth Texas swam 
the stream and made prisoners of the bridge force of 
guards and on we went until late in the evening near 
Noonah after a hard fight we took them prisoners of 
war. McCook and a part of his staff rode out while the 
force was occupied with the surrender. 

They first released their prisoners that they had cap- 
turecT"consistmg of the minor officers connected with the 
quartermasters office and commissary and the teamsters 
and others whose duties kept them in the rear, then 
they marched out about 2,000 strong, and laid down 
their guns. Then this writer fell off his horse fast 
asleep. The next day had advanced considerable before 
I awoke in the midst of a dense crowd of sleeping Yan- 
kees and I was so bewildered that it took me several 
moments to realize who I was and where, and the sur- 
roundings. My arms were upon me but my horse was 
gone, I knew not where, I was hungry and tired and as 
my haversack was empty, I picked up a Yanks haver- 
sack, (ours were of white ducking, theirs of black oii 
cloth) and ate some raw bacon and hard tack an set out 
to get me a horse and saddle. I got a good mount from 


the great number, grazing nearby. The only difficulty 
was fear of getting a mount belonging to some Confed- 
erate soldier which would be a cloud on future title, but 
I got an officers rig — horse, bridle, saddle and blankets, 
roll, sabre, etc. The last two items were dispensed with 
as I had no use for them, for I was never much impressed 
with the sabre as they always appeared to be more an 
appendage to dress than a real war implement but quite 
a number of the brigade had wounds from the sabre and 
they were ugly, cruel looking wounds. Among those 
now remembered was my chum Lum Dees, Company F, 
Ninth Texas, a big fat boy about 20 years old, that 
looked to be as soft as a woman and one would have 
thought he could have been dispatched with an ordinary 
walking cane, but a Yankee trooper gave him one of 
his best efforts at a front cut which was only lightly 
parried with a six shooter Lum was using and was re- 
ceived on Lum's head covered only with a light felt hat. 
It was a fearful looking wound, but Lum held his 
ground and if alive, now has a scar from the top of the 
head well down the cheek. I noted this wound, as he 
was my chum. 

Well the prisoners were soon sent off under escort, the. 
stock gathered up, the wounded taken to a farm house, 
the dead buried, the dead horses and mules placed on 
heaps of logs and burned up, the arms picked up, the 
vehicles parked and the little battery carried to the park 
when this writer at his leisure examined his first rapid 
fire breech-loading artillery, which I will not here de- 
scribe as such things are so common now, will only say 
that they were dandies, but the Yanks had tried to 
destroy them before leaving them, had tried to break 
off the loading cranks and broken the Telescope used in 
sighting the pieces. There were four pieces all alike 
rifles and carried balls about the size of a goose egg, 
made to fit the rifles in the bore of the guns, and it is 
needless to say they shot true and had a long range. 


Chapter XIX. 

If an old soldier ever should read these pages he will 
realize the ruin on a surrendered field, but if not an old 
soldier no pen could give an idea of the ruin soldiers 
will make of their equipage before they will surrender, 
batterymen will take axes and cut the spokes in the 
wheels that carry the guns, soldiers will break their 
guns against trees and logs and the teamsters will blow 
up the ordnance and waste is the rule, the greater the 
better. Such was this field. 

On placing a wounded man in the yard of a farm- 
house on the field the writer discovered a United States 
officer in the house with his side arms in his belt and 
demanded their surrender, this the officer refused, the 
lady of the house left the room and ran up a flight of 
stairs and the officer followed her and the writer joined 
the party stating the consequence to a further refusal, 
the officer swore that he would never surrender his 
arms to his country's foes and things were assuming 
serious features, the officer hesitated, the woman 
screamed with fright, others soon followed on the stairs, 
the writer nervous over the situation. While he at- 
tempted to count ten seconds the officer unclasped his 
belt reluctantly and with quickness clasped it around 
the body of the screaming woman then walked down 
stairs a prisoner. 

Mrs. G was a true Southern woman and her house 

was made a field hospital. She afterwards gave the 
writer the officer's arms and spoke of her fright pleas- 
antly. As it fell to the duty of the writer to remain on 
the field until the last of the wounded were removed to 


the hospital at Noonon he was at her house for 8 or 10 
days and in that time became more acquainted. 

There were five union doctors and 8 or 10 nurses left 
with the Federals and 8 or 10 of us left to bury the dead 
and care for the wounded, and we explored the field and 
many curious citizens came to see the ground and a 
large lot of negroes came and we put them to work. 

While the Southern army occupied the works around 
Atlanta there were other raids sent out to cut off all 
communication but all failed. I recollect another raid- 
ing party that started out nearly from the same place 
as McCook but failed as we were so close on to them 
that they scattered and some of them got away in little 
squads. They struck the Georgia Central railroad at a 
place called Rough and Ready. We took them nearly 
all prisonors. I think it was led by Gen. Steele. 

While at Atlanta the heaviest part of their rallies was 
upon the right wing of our army and towards the last of 
summer they succeeded in flanking the city and the 
army evacuated and Gen. Hardie took a stand at Jones- 
boro and I think that this was the bloodiest field I was 
ever on, but it is not my purpose to tell of battles, the 
movements of armies, but to tell of what I saw and how 
it was understood by a private soldier. 

At Jonesboro I noticed that the ditches were cross- 
wayed for the artillery with the dead and I saw more 
than one place where the carriages had been crossed 
over the ditches after being filled with the dead and 
only a small amount of earth covering them. At Jones- 
boro I saw a tree shot off some distance above ground 
and the body of the tree was cut in two as it was falling. 
From this point we started into Tennessee under Hood. 
This battle was fought about the first day of September, 

The long and continuous march into Tennessee was a 
severe service and the cavalry, especially Ross* Bri- 
gade, was in constant service, the van guard on the ad- 
vance and the rear guard on the retreat, yet no great 


battle was fought before we reached Franklin, Tennes- 
see, on Nov. 30th, in which our arms were victorious, 
but a victory too dearly bought to suggest pleasant 
memories and services for cavalry were extremely se- 
vere as we were nearly the whole of the time under the 
galling fire of the enemy's best gunners until after the 
great and last general engagement at Nashville Dec. 
15th and 16th, 1864. 


Headquarters Ross' Brigade, I. C. D., Corinth, Miss., 
Jan. 12, 1865. 
Captain : 

I have the honor to submit the following report of the 
part performed by my brigade in the late campaign into 
middle Tennessee : 

First, however, and by way of introduction, it is 
proper to premise that we bore a full share in the ard- 
uous duties required of the Cavalry in the Georgia 
campaign and were particularly active during the oper- 
ations of the army upon the enemy's line of communi- 

October 24th, in compliance with orders from division 
commander, I withdrew from my position near Cave 
Springs, Ga., crossed the Coosa River at Gadsden the 
day following and by rapid marches arrived in front of 
Decatur, Ala., on the evening of the 29th. Was here 
halted to observe the movements of the enemy while the 
army rested at Tuscumbia. On the morning of Nov. 
8th a strong reconoitering party consisting of three 
Regiments of Infantry and one of Cavalry, coming out 
from Decatur on the Courtland road, was promptly met 
and after a sharp skirmish driven back with some loss. 
The next day, being relieved by a portion of Gen. 
Roddy's command, we retired down the valley to Town 
Creek and rested until the 18th, when we were ordered 
across the river at Florence, and moving at once to the 


front of the army, took position with the other Cavalry 
commands on Shoal Creek. 

Nov. 21st, all things being ready for the advance, we 
were ordered forward, following in rear of Armstrong's 
Brigade. The effective fighting strength of my command 
at this time was as follows: 3d Reg. Texas Cav. 218; 
6th Re<?. Texas Cav. 218; 9th Reg. Texas Cav 110; 27th 
Reg. Texas Cav. 140; making a total of 686. With this 
small force we joined the advance into Tennessee, strong 
in heart and resolved to make up in zeal and courage 
what was wanting in numbers. The day after crossing 
Shoal Creek, Gen. Armstrong having still the advance, 
came up with Federal cavalry at Lawrenceburg. The 
fighting was chiefly with artillery, Captain Young's 
battery being freely used and to good effect. About 
sunset the enemy withdrew in the direction of Pulaski. 
Early the next morning I was ordered to take the ad- 
vance, and move out on the Pulaski road. About 
twelve miles from Lawrenceburg came up with the 
Federal pickets and drove them in. The Third Texas 
now dismounted and with two squadrons from the 
Twenty-seventh Texas moved forward and attacked the 
enemy, forcing him from his successive positions and 
following him up so vigorously as to compel the precipi- 
tate abandonment of his camps and all his forage. The 
next day, having still the advance, when within five 
miles of Pulaski we changed direction to the left, fol- 
lowing the route taken by the enemy in his retreat the 
evening before, and arriving about noon in sight of the 
little village — Cambellsville — I found a large force of 
Cavalry, which proved to be Hatch's Division, drawn up 
to resist us. Lieut. Col. Boggers was ordered promptly 
to dismount his Regiment, the Third Texas, and move it 
to the front. Young's battery was hurried up from the 
rear, placed in position, and supported by the Sixth 
Texas (Colonel Jack Wharton commanding) commenced 
shelling the enemy's lines. In the meanwhile the 9th 
Texas and L,egion, were drawn up, in column, in the 


field to the right of the road, to be used as circumstances 
might require. These dispositions completed, I watched 
with interest, the effect of the shelling from our battery, 
and very soon discovered from the movements of the 
enemy, an intention to withdraw, whereupon, believing 
this to be the proper moment, I ordered everything for- 
ward. The 9th Texas and Legion led by their respect- 
ive commanders, Colonel Jones, and Lt. Col. Whitfield, 
rushed forward at a gallop, and passing through the 
village fell upon the enemy's moving squadrons with 
such irresistable force, as to scatter them in every direc- 
tion, pursuing and capturing, numbrrs of prisoners, 
horses, equipmsnts, small arms, accoutrements and four 
(4) stands of colors. The enemy made no effort to re- 
gain the field from which he had been driven, but while 
endeavoring to withdraw his broken and discomfited 
squadrons was attacked vigorously in flank, by a por- 
tion of Gen. Armstrong's brigade, and his route made 
complete. The last of his forces, in full flight, disap- 
peared in direction of Lynville about sunset, and we saw 
nothing more of them south of Duck river. Our loss, in 
the fight at Campbellsville, was only five (5) men 
wounded, while our captures (I found upon investiga- 
tion) summed up to be 84 prisoners, and all their horses, 
equipments and small arms, four (4) stands of colors 
and 65 beef cattle. Without further opposition, we ar- 
rived the next day in front of Columbia, and took the 
position assigned us, on the Chapel Hill pike. Nov. 
26th we remained in front of the enemv's works, skir- 
mishing freely, and keeping up a lively demonstration. 
On the morning of the 27th being relieved by the in- 
fantry, we were ordered over to Shellyville pike, and 
camped the following night, on Fountain creek. Cross- 
ing Duck river, the next morning, at the mill, nine miles 
above Columbia, we were directed thence, to the right 
(on the Shellyville road), and when near the Lewisburg 
and Franklin pike, again encountered the Federal 
Cavalry. A spirited engagement ensued, begun by the 


3rd Texas, which, being dispatched to attack a train of 
wagons moving in the direction of Franklin, succeeded 
in reaching the pike, but was there met by a superior 
force of Yankees, and driven back. Seeing this I had 
Col. Hawkins to hurry his regiment (the Legion) to the 
assistance of the 3rd and ordered a charge, which was 
made in gallant style, and resulted in forcing the Yan- 
kees from the field in confusion and with the loss of 
several prisoners and the colors of the "7th Ohio Cav- 
alry." In the meanwhile, Col. Wharton, with the 6th 
Texas, charged into the pike to the right of where the 
3rd and Legion were engaged, capturing an entire 
company of the "7th Ohio Cavalry," three (3) stands 
of colors, several wagons loaded with ordnance, and a 
considerable number of horses with their equipments. 
The 9th Texas (Col. Jones), having been detached early 
in the evening to guard the road leading to our right, 
with the exception of a slight skirmish with the enemy's 
pickets, in which several prisoners were taken, was not 
otherwise engaged during the evening. It was now 
after night and very dark. The enemy had disappeared 
from our front, in direction of Franklin, but before es- 
tablishing camps, it was thought prudent to ascertain, if 
any force had been cut off and yet remained between us 
and the river. Col. Hawkins was therefore, ordered up 
the pike with his regiment to reconnoitre, and had pro- 
ceeded but a short distance, befere he was met by a 
brigade of Federal Cavalry. An exciting fight ensued, 
lasting about half an hour, when the enemy having 
much the larger force, succeeded in passing by us, re- 
ceiving as he did so, a severe fire into his flanks. This 
closed the operations of the day, and we were allowed 
to bivouac, well pleased with the prospect of rest, after 
so much fatiguing exercise. 

At "Hunt's cross roads" the next day, where the 
other commands of Cavalry took the left, and moved 
upon Spring Hill, my brigade was advanced upon the 
road to Franklin. Afterwards, in obedience to orders of 


the Division Commander, we turned towards Thomp- 
son's Station, being now in the rear of the Federal Ar- 
my, which still held its position on Rutherford's creek. 
The Yankee Cavalry, completely whipped, had disap- 
peared in the direction of Franklin, and did not again 
show itself that day. When near Thompson's Station, I 
discovered a few wagons moving on the pike, and sent 
Col. Jones, with the 9th and Legion, to intercept and 
capture them. At the same time, the 6th and 3rd Texas 
were drawn up in line, and a squadron from the latter 
dispatched, to destroy the depot. Col. Jones was par- 
tially successful, capturing and destroying one wagon 
and securing the team. He then charged a train of 
cars, which came up from the direction of Franklin, 
when the engineer, becoming frightened, cut the engine 
loose and ran off southward. The train, thus freed, be- 
gan to retrograde, and in spite of the obstructions 
thrown in its way and the efforts of the men to stop it, 
rolled back under the guns of a blockhouse and was 
saved. The guard, however, and all the men on the 
train were forced to jump off, and became our prisoners. 
I now had the railroad bridge destroyed, in consequence 
of which, the engine that escaped from us, and another, 
became the prizes of our Army the next day. In the 
meantime, the enemy at the depot, observing the ap- 
proach of the squadron from the 3rd Texas, set fire to 
all of his valuables, including a train of cars loaded 
with ordnance, and evacuated the place. 

Having accomplished all that could be effected in the 
station, we withdrew, late in the evening, dropping 
back to the left of Spring Hill and halted, until I could 
communicate with the Division Commander. About 
midnight, I received the order, directing me to again 
"strike the pike" and attack the enemy's train, then in 
full retreat to Franklin. Moved out at once to obey the 
order, guided by an officer of Gen. Forrest's staff, who 
knew the country. When within half a mile of the pike, 
I dismounted three (3) of my regiments, leaving the 


Ninth Texas mounted, to guard their horses, and cau- 
tiously advancing on foot, got within 100 yards of the 
enemy's train without being discovered. The Legion 
(Col. Hawkins, commanding) having the advance, 
fronted into line, fired a well directed volley, killing 
several Yankees and mules and rushed forward, with a 
yell, producing among the teamsters and wagon guards 
a perfect stampede. The Yankees lost 39 wagons, some 
of which were destroyed, and others abandoned for the 
want of the teams which we brought off. We captured 
also several prisoners. Remaining in possession of the 
pike for half an hour, we withdrew upon the approach 
of several bodies of infantry, which coming up in oppo- 
site directions, by mistake, got to shooting into each 
other, and fired several volleys, before finding out their 
error. Having remounted our horses, we remained on 
the hill overlooking the pike, until daylight, and saw 
the Yankee army in full retreat. While this was pass- 
ing, a regiment of cavalry, appearing in an open field in 
our front, was charged by the Sixth Texas, completely 
routed and driven behind his infantry column. Soon 
after this, we again pushed forward, keeping parallel 
with the pike, upon which our infantry was moving, 
crossed Harpeth river in the evening, about 3 miles 
above Franklin, only a small force of the enemy ap- 
pearing to dispute the passage. Half a mile from the 
river we came upon a regiment of Yankee cavalry 
drawn up in line. This the Ninth Texas at once 
charged, and routed, but was met by a larger force, and 
in turn, compelled to give back, the enemy following in 
close pursuit. The Third Texas now rushed forward, 
checked the advancing squadrons of the Yankees, and 
then hurled them back, broken and disorganized, cap- 
turing several prisoners, and driving the others back 
upon their heavier lines. The gallant bearing of the 
men and officers of the Third and Ninth Texas on this 
occasion, is deserving of special commendation, and it 
affords me much gratification, to record to the honor of 


these noble regiments, that charges made by them at 
Harpeth river, have never been, and cannot be sur- 
passed by cavalry of any nation. By the charge of the 
Third Texas, we gained possession of an eminence, 
overlooking the enemy's position, and held it until late 
in the evening when discovering an intention, on the 
part of the Yankee commander, to advance his entire 
force, and being without any support, I withdrew to the 
south side of the river again. Very soon the enemy ad- 
vanced his whole line, but finding we had recrossed the 
river again retreated and during the night withdrew 
from our front. The next day, we moved forward, ar- 
rived in front of Nashville Dec. 3rd and took position on 
the Nolens ville pike 3 miles from the city. Just in our 
front was a line of works, and wishing to ascertain what 
force occupied them, I had two squadrons of Sixth Tex- 
as to dismount, deploy as skirmishers and advance. 
We found the works held only by the enemy's skirmish- 
ers who withdrew upon our approach. After this, being 
relieved by our infantry, we retired to the rear with or- 
ders to cook up rations. On the morning of Dec. 5th, 
the brigade was ordered to Larergne; found there a 
small force of infantry, which took refuge inside the 
fort, and after slight resistance, surrendered upon de- 
mand of the Division Commander. Moving thence to 
Murfresboro, when within a few miles of the city, th e 
enemy's pickets were encountered, and after a stubborn 
resistance driven back by the Sixth and Third Texas, 
dismounted. A few days after this, Major Gen. Forrest 
invested Murfresboro with his cavalry One (1) division 
of infantry. 

The duty assigned my brigade, being to guard all the 
approaches to the city, from the Salem to the Woodbury 
pike, inclusive, was very severe, for so small a force, 
and almost every day there was heavy skirmishing on 
some portion of our line. Dec. 15th, a train of cars 
from Stevenson heavily laden with supplies for the gar- 
rison at Murfresboro, was attacked about 7 miles south 


of the city, and although guarded by a regiment of in- 
fantry, two hundred strong, was captured and burned. 
The train was loaded with sugar, coffee, hard bread and 
bacon and carried full 200,000 rations. The men 
guarding it, fought desperately for about an hour, hav- 
ing a strong position in a cut of the railroad, but were 
finally routed by a most gallant charge of the Sixth 
Texas, supported by the Third Texas, and 150 of them 
captured. The others escaped to a blockhouse near by. 
The next day in consequence of the reverses to our 
arms at Nashville, we were withdrawn from /the front of 
Murf resboro ; ordered across to Trianna, and thence to 
Columbia, crossing Duck river in the evening of the 
18th. Dec. 24th, while bringing up the rear of our 
army, the enemy charged my rear guard at Lynville, 
with a heavy force, and threated to break over all oppo- 
sition, when the Sixth Texas, hastily forming, met, and 
hurled them back, administering a most wholesome 
check to their ardor. At the moment this occurred, our 
columns were all in motion, and it was of the utmost 
importance, to break the charge of the enemy on our 
rear. Too much credit, therefore, cannot be given the 
Sixth Texas, for gallant bearing on this occasion. Had 
it failed to check the enemy, my brigade and probably 
the entire Division, taken at a disadvantage might have 
suffered severely- At Richland creek, where the Cav- 
alry took position later in the day, I was assigned a po- 
sition on the right of the railroad, and in front of the 
creek. Soon afterwards however, the enemy moving as 
if to cross above the bridge, I was withdrawn to the 
south side of the creek, and taking position on the hill 
near the railroad, skirmishing with the enemy in my 
front, holding him in check, until our forces had all 
crossed the creek. We were then ordered to withdraw 
and passing through Pulaski, again crossed Richland 
creek and camped near Mr. Carter's for the night. The 
next day my brigade alternating with Gen. Armstrong 
in bringing up the rear, had frequent skirmishes with 



the enemy's advance. Nine miles from Pulaski, when 
the Infantry halted, and formed, I was ordered on the 
right. Soon after this, the enemy made a strong effort 
to turn our right flank, but failed, and was driven back. 
About the same time the infantry charged, and cap- 
tured his artillery, administering such an effectual 
check, that he did not again show himself that day. 

This done, we retired leisurely, and after night, 
bivouacked on sugar creek. Early the following morn- 
ing, the Yankees still not satisfied, made their appear- 
ance and our Infantry again made dispositions to re- 
ceive him. Reynold's and Ector's brigades took posi- 
tion and immediately in their rear I had the Legion and 

9th Texas drawn up in column of fours, to charge, if an 
opportunity should occur. The fog was very dense and 
the enemy therefore approached very cautiously. When 
near enough to be seen, the Infantry fired a volley and 
charged. At the same time the Legion and 9th Texas 
were ordered forward, and passing through our Infant- 
ry, crossed the creek in the face of a terrible fire, over- 
threw all opposition on the further side, and pursued the 
thoroughly routed foe, near a mile, capturing 12 prison- 
ers and as many horses, besides killing numbers of 
others. The force opposed to us here and which was so 
completely whipped, proved, from the statements of the 
prisoners to be "Hammond's brigade of Cavalry." 

After this, the Yankees did not again show themselves 
and without further interruption we recrossed the Ten- 
nessee riyer at Bainbride on the evening of the 27th of 
December. Our entire loss during the campaign sums 
up as follows : 





































Third Texas Cavalry- 
Sixth Texas Cavalry 
Ninth Texas Cavalry 
Texas Legion 














We captured on the trip and brought off, five hundred 
and fifty (550) prisoners as shown by the records of my 
Provost Marshall, nine (9) stands of colors, several 
hundred horses and their equipments and overcoats and 
blankets sufficient to supply my command. We de- 
stroyed besides, two trains of cars, loaded, one with 
ordnance and the other with commissary stores, forty or 
fifty wagons and mules and much other valuable prop- 
erty belonging to the Federal army. My brigade re- 
turned from Tennessee with horses very much jaded, 
but otherwise in no worse condition than when it started, 
its morale, not in ths least affected nor impaired by the 
evident demoralization which prevailed to a considera- 
ble extent throughout the larger portion of the army. 

Before closing my report I desire to record an ac- 
knowledgment of grateful obligations to the gillant of- 
ficers and brave men whom I have the honor to com- 
mand. Entering upon the campaign, poorly clad and 
illy prepared for undergoing its hardships, these worthy 
votaries of freedom nevertheless bore themselves brave- 
ly and I did not hear a murmur, nor witness the least 
reluctance in the discharge of duty however unpleasant. 
All did well and to this, I attribute in a great measure 
the unparallelled success which attended all our efforts ^ 
during the campaign. 

To Col. D. W. Jones, Col. E. R. Hawkins, Col. Jack 
Wharton and Lt. Col. J. L. Boggers, who commanded 
their respective regiments and Lt. Col. P. F. Ross and 
Maj. L. B. Wilson, Sixth Texas; Lt. Col. I. T. Whitfield 
and Maj. B. H. Nosworthy of Legion; Major A. B. 
Stone, Third Texas, and Maj. H. C. Dial, Ninth Texas, 
also Captains Gurly, Plummer, Killough and Preston, 
Lieutenants Alexander and Lykes, members of my staff 
I feel especially indebted for earnest, zealous and effi- 
cient co-operation. These officers upon many trying 
occasions acquitted themselves with honor and it affords 


me pleasure, to be able to commend them to the favora- 
ble notice of the Brigadier General Commanding. 

I have the honor to be Captain, Very Resp't., 
Official Your Obedient Servant 

A. A. G. "sg" L. S. ROSS, 

Brig. Gen'l. I. C. 


Chapter XX. 

We finally reached our old stamping ground in Miss- 
issippi about midway between Jackson, Vicksburg and 
Yazoo City where we encamped, keeping up pickets and 
picking up squads and foraging parties till the final 
close, which was first made known to us by returning 
prisoners, who told us that Gen. R. E. Lee had surren- 
dered, which news created no great sensation for we all 
knew that the end was nigh and the terms were the 
only questions asked and our hearts grew lighter when 
we learned the terms of Lee's surrender. The Yankee 
pickets told us from their posts on the opposite of Big 
Black river and in a short time Johnston's surrender 
was made known and the terms were published in Gen- 
eral Order No. . (See Stephens History Appen- 
dix), All were satisfied. Previous to this order at a 
meeting ef the brigade in which the situation was being 
discussed there were propositions offered that we do not 
surrender, but break up into squads and continue a 
guarilla warfare in the Trans-Mississippi department. 
"Yes!" shouted Tomykins of the 9th, the leaves will 
soon be green and our horses can live on the grass and 
this brigade can take all the supplies we want from any 
corps of Yankees that ever invaded Southern soil. We 
will fight them to the end, as long as life blood flows in 
the veins of any man that has followed Ross. 
Cheers and shouts echoed up and down the line and it 
seemed that this thing might be. Just at this time an 
officer spoke. I do not recollect the name but think it 
was Capt. Kellough, of Gen. Ross' staff. 

He told us of the situation in Mexico, as an attempt to 


crown a head in that neighboring Republic by those 
European powers, which he explained was contrary to 
the Monroe Doctrine and that complications were now 
likely rising that would plunge the United States now 
in a weak and depleted condition in a war with France 
at that time supposed one of the most powerful nations 
of the earth and that we would soon be called upon to 
stand in defence of the United States against France in 
Mexico. We will take paroles go home and get ready 
to fight for our country. Great enthusiasm prevailed in 
our brigade, we were all ready to go. Johnston's terms 
of surrender in our minds confirmed these statements 
and I here note that this was the prevailing thought in 
military circles, and the thoughtful can now look back 
on the situation and verify its truthfulness. 

Thus quietly the situation was discussed and suppos- 
ing that we had still another and more serious war 
against our liberties. We all agreed to surrender and 
one or more of our officers went to Jackson with the 
muster rolls and in a few days returned and issued pa- 
roles without a single United States soldier within our 

Our artillery was parked and arms stacked to be 
taken to Jackson. The old flag was taken from the 
staff and folded up as a relic. Our side arms were all 
retained with horses, saddles and all other equipage and 
the only difference that the writer really saw was the 
officers ceased to command or to advise, and the com- 
mand was disbanded, as well as I now recollect was 
April 27th, 1865. At the time of disbanding we were in- 
formed that the United States would furnish transporta- 
tion for us to our homes and all that wanted to go to 
Texas were directed to be at the city of Vicksburg for 
embarcation on May 5th. 

The small amount of commissary stores were issued, 
not enough however, to last us to the appointed time for 
rendesvou (place of meeting), but enough to last two or 
three days. Well, we had plenty of time to think the 


matter over, as there was no rush, for it was not more 
than forty miles to Vicksburg. So we ate and slept and 
organized for our home trip. This writer in a party of 
five agreeing to share fortune and fate sat out together 
(two of the five disabled from old wounds). 

As we had plenty of leisure and a very little money, 
we thought it would be a good time for visiting. Ac- 
cordingly we visited a friend near Bolton and put in a 
day visited Jeff Davis' farm and surroundings. Of 
course Mr. Davis was not at home, but we could see the 
signs of wealth gone to waste, everything showed signs 
of its days of splendor. Buildings, lawns, drives, all 
showed the lavished expenditure of money. Such as in 
those days could be found in Mississippi among what 
was termed "secluded society," all of whom it appears 
had endeavored to excell in grandest display of selfish 

There was nothing unusually striking in the place 
more than could be found in many other like places, 
except perhaps, Jeff Davis' private library, which my 
friend informed me, was valued at $30,000, and was 
at that time scattered out among the neighboring 
residents as a means of hiding it value and identity. My 
friend told me of several places that had books belonging 
to the library and showed me two large boxes filled with 
Davis* books besides dozens of volumes in his shelves 
mixed with his own books. Such was the strategy 
used by the President's neighbors to preserve for him 
his valued library. 

While examining the President's books in the large 

library hall of my friend Col. P , I noticed upon 

the wall a very fine portrait of a beautiful woman life 
size in very fine frame, a picture that would call atten- 
tion in any gallery, for finest execution as well as sub- 
lime beauty. I asked Col. P from what master 

hand such work had come and lamented an ugly hole 
in the beautiful cheek of the picture. The subject said 
he, was my wife and was done by at Paris, 


France, and Oh! it is my dear dead "mama!" atid an 
old Yankee stuck her there in the face, stuck in a small 
voice of his little daughter, Jennie, a little tot six or 
seven years old that was following us unnoticed, 
turned and looked at the little girl, her face was cov- 
ered with tears and her favor showed her story to be 
true. I heard no more of Col. P story of the pict- 
ure, but Jennie told me that a soldier with his bayonet 
on his gun pierced the picture causing the ugly break in 

the sacred canvass. Col. P was broken up at the 

surrender and in poverty moved back to New York 
state, his former home, and may God have healed the 
wound in little Jennie's heart that was made when the 
careless soldier pierced the unoffending canvass. We 
bade our friends goodby, and next visited the Robert- 
son farm. 

James and John Robertson of circus fame are well 
known all over the world, but people doubted sometimes 
when they advertised Southern Circus, and few know 
that they raised on this farm many of their finest horses 
for the ring as well as many rare and curious animals. 
James Robertson, Sr.,"of the firm, was at home and re- 
ceived our little party with as much apparent distinction 
* as though we were the court of crowned heads of Europe 
he bid us welcome, and entertained us in his gardens of 
rear plants and turned on the spray from his costly 
fountains and while the rainbows played he told us of 
the habits and homes of his wonders in plants and flow- 
ers. Then he took us a walk in his park and showed us 
the animals, Elk, Deer, Yack, Llama and sacred cattle 
and many others. He showed us the pool with its 
island for his fowls, Swans, Geese, and other like fowls 
with their young, then to the stables where he had 
horses and camels from all countries, imported at fabu- 
lous costs, then to his tables loaded with the best, and 
such service as I had never before witnessed. 

After supper we were shown to a room large enough 
to accommodate all. His wardrobe he opened to us re- 


marking medestly, that he too, was not much ahead of 
the average soldier on account of Uncle Sam's vigilence 
in the blockade business but to help ourselves if there 
was anything we could use. After a bath and clean 
linen we had all gone to bed. A rap at the door and 
some servants entered with trays and baskets. Robert- 
son come in and informed us that he still had one basket 
of champagne and that he was arranging to enjoy the 
last or the war with Ross' Brigade, the last to surren- 
der, of that army, in his last champagne. Well, with the 
lost cause we did not lose our appetites and with eating 
and drinking and toasting the night was spent, and on the 
following morning we answered to the bell at break- 
fast, from the ragged soldiers of the evening before to 
passable looking gentlemen, but I must confess my 
head felt very curious, and that his entertainment beat 
his street parade and great shows combined. 

Taking leave of our host we moved down towards Big 
Black bridge. That was the Yankee line. Just before 
we got to the guards we met some paroled soldiers who 
told us that the guard had taken their pistols away from 
them and we would better leave our arms or conceal 
them. We stopped and with a fire unsoldered one side 
of our canteens and took off our pistols and by taking 
them apart succeeded in placing the pistols in the can- 
teens, all but one, which we hid in a patch of briars. 
At the bridge we halted and showed our papers and 
allowed to proceed. On our way to Vicksburg we met a 
company of colored troops, all of them wearing crape on 
their left arms, and the officers had crape on their sa- 
bres. On asking the cause was told of the death of Mr. 

On reaching Vicksburg we noted a small monument 
on the roadside, and learned that it was set up on the 
spot where Gen. Pemberton surrendered the city, long 
lines of earth works and the ruins of mines all showed 
that there had been some war around the old city. 
Many of the brigade had preceded us and were en- 


camped at the fair ground, others joined us and we by 
this time formed a good size squad. On the way to our 
quarters we passed through one of the principal streets 
and on the street we passed a colored school and as we 
passed the schoolhouse the pupils all greeted us with 
R — e — b reb. e — 1, Rebel. Some of the boys returned 
the salute with an Indian gobble. Some of our ex-offi- 
cers demanded silence, and we passed without further 
notice and encamped for the night at the fair ground. 
The river was very full all over the bottom and good 
large boats were running out the main road opposite to 
the city. On the following day we embarked for home 
on the Fairchild with a barge alongside for our horses. 
After getting all aboard and taking on a good lot of 
bacon and hard tack we set out down the river. Old 
Glory streamed from the front and our flag was hoisted 
on the rear of the steamer, but on passing some gun- 
boats that were on duty, they hailed us, and we were 
forced to round to until thev sent a boat to us, which 
caused some delay, and it was thought best on this ac- 
count to take down Ross' Brigade flag, so it was done. 
There were only a very few Yankee soldiers on board 
the boat and they occupied the ladies cabin, and the 
rest of space was filled with Texans and Louisianians 
stowed as thick as black birds. It was too hot inside 
and too damp outside and very uncomfortable. As we 
came down the river we met a transport going up with 
the Federal prisoners from Tyler, Texas, and if possible 
they were stowed thicker than were we on the Fairchild. 
We had to keep in a shape to equalize the weight as 
all to one side would cause our boat to creen to a dan- 
gerous degree but without event of note we reached the 
mouth of Red river and rounded the point on the home 
stretch. Then up to Fort Jenicia where the officer of 
the Fairchild told us he would have to land us, as the 
river from that point had ^torpedoes in it and was dan- 
gerous. We landed at the fort. On the following day we 
started our horses home but as I had some cripples with 


me I took chances to make it up the river. There was a 
steamer at the warf and we boarded her and demanded 
that they take us to Shreveport. The boats crew pro- 
tested that the boat was unsafe and crippled, but that 
was no go. We started up the river and had run but a 
short while before we found that her captain was truth- 
ful and we hailed the steamer Gen. Hodges as she was 
coming down the river laden with cotton bales and told 
him that we were under the necessity of taking hi3 boat 
back up the river. He protested but we landed him on 
the river bark and rolled off 700 or 800 bales or cotton 
and placed a good lot of rails from a neighboring farm 
as full on board and proceeded up the river. After he 
found that his boat had to go back he became more 
cheerful and our voyage up was without event. 

As soon as a plank from the Gen. Hodges touched the 
shore it was filled with soldiers and packs, many with 
crutches all anxious to get ashore. Here we scattered 
in all directions. Most of the Titus Greys lived near 
Dangerfield and they started for Jefferson. Many met 
with friends and conveyance and as my parents lived in 
the west part of the county near the Hopkins county line 
a crowd of us, eleven in number, set out for the town of 
Greenwood. We had only gone out side the city limit 
until we come upon a camp of a supply train from Gilmer 
on their return. It is needless to say that we rode up to 


Chapter XXI. 

At Marshall we learned that the Arsenal would be 
blown up that night and if we needed anything there we 
could draw it, so when we come up we drew arms for 
eleven Springfield rifles and 1,000 cartridges, that is one 
case. We had not gone far before we were too heavily 
loaded. We made a dry camp about five miles west and 
in the night some time, the Arsenal was blown up. It 
made a terrible noise. On the following morning we set 
out to walk home. We divided out to get something to 
eat and after eating we walked on, never getting two 
meals at the same place. At Pittsburg we met with 
some hunters with a deer and they gave us supper and 
from Pittsburg we made it to Catons Mill and close by 
there was a distillery where we all separated, and alone 
I tramped back to my father's house. I got home about 
the 27th of May, 1865. 

I have neglected to tell you that my mother had writ- 
ten to me in almost every letter to send her a pair of 
cotton cards if I had an opportunity, and if I come to 
bring the cards and at Vicksburg I bought a pair of 
cards and stripped the card teeth from the board backs 
and rolled them in my pack and on getting home I de- 
livered the cards, but the formed lines of trade beat me 
home and they were not needed. 

On getting home I found that my brothers had pre- 
ceded me and were expecting me with a crowd of 
friends. All the young ladies in the neighborhood were 

My mother in her great joy gathered me about the 
neck and at the same time her yard dog gathered me by 


the leg* and between the two my reception was full warm 
for I was lame for several days, but I was too happy to 

I have thus given in this awkward manner the result 
of my personal recollections of the war between the 
states with some incidents that have a fixedness on my 
memory, not of their great importance but because I 
remember them and am writing my momorage, believ- 
ing it to be in the main true, but faulty in the manner 
in which it is told. 

I have now given you the cause of the war as I saw it, 
together with the war as I saw it and will now give 
some of the effects of the war as I realized them. 

It will now be my purpose to tell you of the Titus 
Greys, as you have already been told that they served 
first under Brig. Gen. Cooper of the Indian department, 
Brig. Gen. McCullough at Elk Horn, in the Trans-Mis- 
sissippi department under Generals Price and Van Dorn 
and with them were transferred to the army of the west 
under the orders of all of their Division and brigade 
generals in the army of the west. 

At Elkhorn battle after the death of Gen. McCullough 
my recollection is that a part of the brigade was under 
orders of Col. Pike and the remainder under or- 
ders of Col. Griffith. After dismounting we were in 
part under the command of Brig. Generals Hogg, Phif- 
er, Cobel, Griffith, Whitfield, Mabry and Ross and have 
done fighting under Pineon, Chalmers, Morgan, Forest, 
Wheeler and others. 

After the death of Gen. Van Dorn his cavalry corps 
was separated. Maj. Gen. Bradford Forest took one 
Division and Maj. Gen. William Jackson the other Di- 
vision. The two Divisions were about equal, their 
services were about the same. They (the Generals) 
were both from the same state, Tennessee, both brave 
men and nothing has been written in honor of General 
Forest and his brave followers that was not justly mer- 
ited for no truer men or braver hearts ever shouldered 


arms for Confederate defence than the Division com- 
manded by General Bradford Forest. Let their deeds 
of clash and daring shine on the pages of history and 
let their fame be sung in grand anthems to younger 
brothers in arms that are now departing over the seas, 
but let us remember that Gen. W. H. Jackson, who 
commanded the other Division fought equally as many 
successful battles, captured fully as many 
prisoners, arms, colors, and other property as did the 
immortal Forest, and today while the world looks won- 
deringly on the deeds of the lion Forest, there are 
those who can see in the background the unsung man 
whom we know to have been the military peer of Forest 
on any field who like Forest had the heart of a lion, but 
with it he has the modesty of a woman. See General 
Jackson then his war record. 

Our field officers as I now remember: 

Col. Bradford Sims was wounded at Elk Horn and 
was forced to retire. 

Col. Towne was wounded at Corinth and retired. 

Col. D. W. Jones surrendered the 9th and was paroled 
at the end of the war. 

Lt. Col. Quail resigned on account of defective eye- 
sight and returned home. 

Lt. Col. Berry was killed in battle in the Georgia cam- 
paign, Jonesboro. 

Maj. Towne elected Col. on the re -organization. 

Major Dodson resigned his commission and visited us 
in the winter of 1873. 

Maj. Dial returned to Texas, his home, and is our 
only field officer now living — Died. 1899. 

Dr. James Robertson, surgeon, rank captain, promo- 

Dr. March, rank lieutenant, promoted surgeon, rank 

Do not remember our other doctors' whereabouts. 

Chaplain Ischey killed at Noonan, Ga. 

Adjutant Jones elected Lt. Col. at the re-organization. 


Adjutant Ezelle resigned from some cause not now 

Adjutant Griscome was paroled and returned to Texas 
with company D. 9th Texas Cavalry. 

Sargt. Major Goodman came back to Texas and is 
now living. 

Sargt. Major Trivilion lived through and came home. 

Our company officers during the war were as follows 
to my best recollection. 

Capt. Chas. Stuart killed at Round Mound. 

Capt. Jas. English resigned to serve west. 

Capt. Perry Evans, took command of a scouting party 
after the fall of Vicksburg and he never afterwards did 
service with the company. 

Lt. Load Miller resigned, cause not now remembered. 

Lt. Buster Haynes killed at Corinth. 

Lt. Jas. English elected captain after the loss of Capt. 

Lt. John A. Coplin killed in Mississippi. 

Lt. Henry Haynes in command of the company from 
fall of Vicksburg to the close of the war and surrendered 
and came home with the company. 

Lt. William Moore returned to Texas with his com- 

Lt. Wm. Chambers, I do not recollect his whereabouts 
at the close of the war, but feel sure he lived through 
the war but have never met him. Since learned he 
lives near Huntsville, Ala. 


Chapter XXII. 




The year of grace one thousand eight hundred and 
sixty-one dawned amidst the most portentious clouds 
that had ever lowered above the political horizon of 
America since the stormy period in which the sover- 
eignty of the states had their birth, nearly one hundred 
years before. 

Abraham Lincoln had been elected president of the 
United States by the suffrages of a sectional party 
whose only vitality and power of cohesion consisted of 
antagonism against the South and her most cherished 
principles and institutions; and his induction into the 
high office was construed by the people of that devoted 
section as the beginning of the "irrepressible conflict," 
so long and so often elaborated by Mr. Seward, amid 
the approving cheers of delighted Northern audiences. 

The declaration of Mr. Lincoln himself, that "this 
country could not remain half slave and half free," had 
always been regarded south of "Mason and Dixon's 
line" as a declaration of war; and, now that the ag- 
gressive and fanatical Northern Republicans had, by 
taking advantage of the suicidal folly of the democratic 
party, placed themselves in a position to give weight to 
the declaration, the South recognized the only alterna- 
tive but submission, left her, and reluctantly accepted 
the saucy gage of battle thrown, as a forced tender, by 
her fanatical foe, and proceeded to stake her all upon 


the brutal arbitrament of arms — a tribunal through 
whose precedents of unwritten law flow the turbid pollu- 
tions of Might and Butchery, and not the limpid stream 
of Right and Justice — relying, with sublime confidence, 
upon the justice of her cause and the valor of her sons. 

But it is not our province, here, to recapitulate all 
those causes that precipitated the tempest of war upon 
our unhappy country. Suffice it to say, that the sec- 
tional administration at Washington gave the South no 
alternative. Mr. Lincoln and his advisers affected to 
regard secession, per se, as a declaration of war, and 
the Confederate government only obeyed the dictates of 
prudence and reason in anticipating the storm by com- 
mencing a vigorous attack upon Fort Stimpter. The 
first gun on that occasion met an affimative response 
from the hearts of nearly all the people of the South, as 
it also inflamed the rage of those at the North. All 
hopes of a compromise were now at an end; the line of 
demarcation was drawn ; the work of pacific statesmen 
had ceased, that of the turbulent soldier was to begin; 
and, in the South many original Unionists now accepted 
the situation of affairs, and cast their lots with their 
states and people. 

It is supposed there are traitors and tories to every 
cause, and though that of "Dixie" was no exception to 
the general rule, in the Southern states, properly so 
styled, there were probably fewer of this nefarious class, 
at the beginning, than ever appeared in any revolution 
of like proportions and radical character. We say that 
this was so at the beginning. Degraded human nature 
never struggles to oppose the flood-tide that promises 
success. Even venal prosperity never lacks for servile 
minions to chant its paeans in tones of adulation. And 
many original secessionists underwent a moderation of 
their fire-eating proclivities with each Southern re- 
verse, until, with that climax of catastrophes at Appo- 
mattox, they had completed the entire circle, and hailed 
the coming Yankees as original "Houston Union men." 



Inquisitive reader, don't ask to glance even at the roll 
of this Legion of Dishonor. Many now reside in pala- 
tial residences, and are families of influence — yet they 
made the poor, bleeding corse of the assassinated Con- 
federacy, the stepping-stone to wealth, position, and 
power. The tocsin of war met a prompt, affirmative re- 
sponse, and every hamlet, village, and city was soon 
the .scene of warlike preparation. The best elements of 
society were the first to volunteer. Youth, ever ardent, 
was conspicuous by its numbers; and schools and col- 
leges dismissed their classes to swell the ranks of the 
embryo army. And right here, let the fact be recorded, 
that the best, the bravest, the hardiest, and less com- 
plaining soldiers were mere boys from sixteen to twenty 
years of age. 

This period was pre-eminently the era of the parlor 
knight. West Pointers, who had never seen West Point 
turned up whenever occasion required it. Scarred vet- 
erans from Nicarau^ua sprung up as if by magic, and 
the author, alone, formed the personal acquaintance of 
at least twelve hundred survivors of the immortal six 
hundred who charged at Balaklava. Thus, every cross- 
roads store, where ardent spirits were kept, could boast 
its own live military man to perfect its " Beauregard 
Rifles," or "Jeff. Davis Grays," in the manual of arms 
and evolutions of the line. What ever became of these 
"Major Savages," "Colonel Desparades," and "General 
Seviers" — pronounced "Severe" — is not positively 
known. It is thought their ardor moderated just before 
the time for marching, and that they subsequently formed 
a portion of that delectable fraction of our population 
who contributed so much to advance the cause through 
their arduous lobors in smuggling cotton to the Yankees. 
Some ensconsed themselves in bomb-proofs about the 
Quartermaster and the Commissary Departments; while 
others developed alarming symptoms of disease that 
found, in the last shots fired, a speedy and radical cure. 

At this time, too, the latent fact was revealed that 


many an old plodding citizen was a real military strate- 
gist. Such "natural-born generals'* would gather an 
admiring crowd upon the street corners, and proceed to 
demonstrate with what ease Washington City could be 
captured. We never stopped short of the capital in 
those brave old days; and, perhaps, had the tide been 
taken just here at the flood, by a dashing leader, the 
capture of Washington could have been effected. Who 
knows? The author remembers ascending Red river in 
the month of May, 1861, fresh from his studies at Cen- 
tenary College, and anxious to reach his native State 
and join a company before the war was over; for the 
eloquent "stump" statesmen did not hesitate to affirm 
that the end of thirty days would witness the close of 
the fifth act of the serio-comic drama. On board the 
same steamboat — the "Texas" — were Colonel Elkanah 
Greer and Captain Harris, both just from Montgomery, 
Alabama, the seat of the Provisional Government of the 
Confederate States, with their commissions. 

Colonel Greer, immediately upon his arrival in Texas, 
issued a call for meu, and designated Dallas as the 
point of rendozvous. The various companies soon ar- 
rived, and were mustered into the Confederate service 
for the period of "one year, unless sooner discharged;" 
so little did we comprehend the magnitude or duration 
of the struggle into which we were entering ! Those 
words seemed a bitter sarcasm when twelve months af- 
terward we were sworn in again, without invitation, 
"for three years, or the war." 

The regiment was organized on the 13th of June, 
1861, and as two other regiments had been raised in the 
State (for frontier protection), this was styled the Third 
Regiment of Texas Cavalry. Walter P. Lane, of Harri- 
son county, was elected Lieutenant- Colonel, and G. W. 
Chilton, of Smith county, was elected Major. 

The following companies composed the regiment: 
Co. A, Harrison county, T. W. Winston, Captain. 
Co. B, Rusk county, R. H. Cumby, Captain, 


Co. C, Cherokee county, Frank Taylor, Captain. 

Co. D, Hunt county, Hale, Captain" 

Co. E, Shelby county, D. M. Short, Captain. 

Co. F, Kaufman county, Isham Chisholm, Captain. 

Co. G, Marion county, H. P. Mabry, Captain. 

Co. H, Wood county, Johnson Russell, Captain. 

Co. I, Cass county, William Bryan, Captain. 

Co. K. Smith county, David Gaines, Captain. 
Captain Harris had previously receiqed his commission 
as Quartermaster ; and Captain Armstrong, of Company 
B, was appointed Commissary of Subsistence. Lieut. 
M. D. Ecter received the appointment of Adjutant. Dr. 
Wallace McDougal, of Company C, was appointed Sur- 
geon, and Dr. Daniel Shaw, of Company B, Assistant 
Surgeon. Abner Rogers, Company G, was named Ser- 
geant-Major. The companies averaged something over 
one hundred men each, and the regiment thus organ- 
ized was prabably 1,200 strong, 

The hospitality of the good citizens of Dallas must not 
be passed over in silence. Each citizen vied with his 
neighbor in the warmth of his reception of the various 
companies; and, finally, a mammoth collation was 
spread, consisting of all the delicacies of the season, by 
the patriotic and liberal people, around which the sol- 
diers were formed in line and "invited" to charge. The 
Hon. R. B, Hubbard and Major G. W. Chilton improved 
this occasion of good cheer by the delivery of eloquent 
and patriotic speeches to the citizens and soldiers. 

Our stay at Dallas was protracted by the non- arrival 
of the wagon -train, with arms, from San Antonio, until 
July 6th. Captain John J. Good had organized an ar- 
tillery company at Dallas, which was attached to the 
regiment, and, with it, took up the line of march, on 
July 9, 1861, for the scene of operations in Missouri. In 
the MS. of my lamented predecessor in this work, I find 
that many of the ardent youth of the. regiment had be- 
come smitten with the charms of the Dallas fair, and 
tore themselves away from the parting scene with re- 


luctance, hugging the cheering hope of a sacred tryst 
when the cruel war was over. Alas! how many manly 
forms came not to the long looked-for re-union ! 
Through tempest and storm, they were true to their 
troth; and go, maidens, who plighted your vows with 
the young heroes, to the lines of Corinth, Iuka, Oak 
Hills, Atlanta, Elk Horn, and where the forlorn hope 
led the hazardous escalade, you'll find them "sleeping 
the sleep that knews no waking" on "this side of the 
river." "No useless coffins enclose their breasts." No 
marble shafts point the pilgrim's steps to the hero- 
patriots' tombs. Their old, worn blankets were their 
only shroud; for the weary and struggling Confederacy, 
stabbed before and behind, was too poor to bury the 
patriot that she was unable to feed, and fell, herself, a 
murdered power, as much in the house of her friends, as 
by the hands of her enemies. 

The arms received by the regiment were of a very 
inferior quality — old United States carbines, shot guns, 
squirrel rifles, etc. Company A was partially armed 
with Colt's revolving rifles and six-shooters, while two 
companies received no arms until within the borders of 
Arkansas. In arms and ammunition, we certainly were 
no match for the enemy, w T ho had an abundance of 
weapons of the latest improvement. Our wagon -train 
consisted of United States wagons, captured at San 
Antonio and the mules bore upon their flesh the plain 
imprint of Uncle Sam's brand. Even the Mexican 
teamsters simply continued the service in the Confed- 
erate army which they did not terminate in the United 
States army. An idea may be had of the kind of work 
the average Texas soldier imagined he would be called 
upon to perform in battle, by the huge knives carried by 
many. Some of these knives were three feet long, and 
heavy enough to cleave the skull of a mailed knight 
through the helmet and all. I think they were never 
used in the butchery of the Yankees, and, ere the close 
of the first year's service, were discarded altogether. 


But great wag the confidence of the Texas soldier in his 
own prowess. To whip the Yankees, five to one, was 
considered the minimum of good fighting, and they sel- 
dom encountered on the field a less superiority of num- 
bers; and this was by no means the greatest advantage 
possessed by the Union forces over their adversaries. 
Yet the Southern Cross, time and again, led them to 
victory, which, alas, was never improved; and their 
deeds justify the assertion, that, with other counsels at 
the head of affairs, they would have proven victorious 
in the end. In fact, they were invincible against any 
power save that brutal grinding away by attrition, 
which the enemy was forced to adopt, and decline the 
combat on the open field, man to man. 

Those were brave old days, we have said, and State 
Sovereignty cropped out on all occasions. To us, Tex- 
as was the "nation;" to her alone we owed allegiance. 
We were allied with the other Southern States, not in- 
dissolubly joined. Each company had a flag, and, in 
addition to its alphabetical designation, bore some other 
name suggested by the spirit of the times. Thus, Com- 
pany A was the "Texas Hunters;" Company G, the 
"Dead- Shot Rangers," etc. 

The regiment proceeded on its march, without inci- 
dent, until the Red river was reached. We crossed at 
Colbert's Ferry into the Choctaw Nation, and en- 
camped about a mile beyond. The river was quite low 
when the men and horses were ferried over. The wag- 
on-train was leisurely crossing, the sky above was with- 
out the fleck of a cloud, when suddenly was heard 
the distant murmur of a coming rise; the murmur deep- 
ened into an ominous roar, as the angry waters were 
precipitated down the mountains, and the flood was 
upon us. In the brief period of thirty minutes, the 
swollen torrent reached from bank to bank, and it was 
with difficulty that the train was saved; indeed, Cap- 
tain Dunn's MS. records the loss of one or two wagons. 

We found our Choctaw allies abreast of the times, and 


earnestly preparing for war. This people were not be- 
hind their Texan compatriots in their hospitality to the 
men of the regiment, and numbers — men, women, 
and children — flocked to the camp to see the 
" warriors. " And as the Choctaws were, so were the 
Creeks, Cherokees, and Chickasaws, Let the record 
here, once for all, suffice for each and every one of these 
noble tribes. We brought the conflct upon them, and 
involved them in the common ruin that overwhelmed us 
both; but as long as a tattered Confederate flag fluttered 
in the breeze, these "untutored children of the forest" 
rallied beneath its folds, with unabated fealty to the 
cause of the South. But if it be imagined that they are 
all literally untutored, the fact will not have been at- 
tained. To illustrate : One day, in the Cherokee Na- 
tion, a number of men dining at the residence of a 
prominent citizen, whose daughter, a young and beau- 
tiful girl, presided at the head of the table. A gallant 
young officer was profuse in his compliments to the 
pretty and intelligent girl. He finally declared that she 
bore a striking resemblance to the portraits of Anne of 
Austria, including, even, the world-renowned pouting 
lips, with their slight vermilion tinge. The young lady, 
not at all abashed by this comparison with the royal 
Anne, replied: "While I may not boast a regal, or 
even a patrician descent, I can claim that the blood of 
three of the most noble nations on earth courses through 
my veins — the Cherokee, the Creek, and the American." 
And this was delivered with a graceful toss of the head 
that would have done honor to fair Gabrielle d'Estrees, 
whose siren charms seduced France's greatest king from 
the path of honor, virtue, and duty. 

En route for Fort Smith, Arkansas — the country was 
fertile, well watered and timbered. Near Big Blue, we 
passed through a beautiful little Cherokee village, amid 
the "vivas" of the men, and the smiles and waving of 
handkerchiefs by the ladies — the latter of whom pre- 
sented the Colonel with a regimental flag. From the 


Big Blue to the Porto, a distance of ten miles, is a hilly, 
rocky, and broken country. 

Here was encamped Colonel Cooper's Indian regi- 
ment, and we had the pleasure of witnessing a war-dance 
one evening. A tree, about six or ten inches in diam- 
eter, was denuded of its bark to a height of eight feet, 
and around this "war- pole" the warriors danced, 
chanting a deep, guttural, and monotonous drawl the 
while. The faces of the men were hideously painted, 
and they were arrayed in habiliments so fantastic that 
Harlequin himself would have been in the height of 
fashion. In the dubious moonlight, their weird figures 
seemed like some phantasm, while the cadence of the 
low and monotonous chant almost lulled the hearer 
into a lethargy. When the shrill war-whoop sounds 
from a single throat, echoed and re-echoed by the rocks 
and hills, startling the eagle in his eyrie, and the wolf 
from its covert, immediately upon the dying echoes a 
thousand braves shriek forth the savage sound, which, 
reverberating from rock to rock, amid the distant moun- 
tains, sounds like the very elements themselves were in 

At Fort Smith, we learned that Lyon and Siegel were 
pressing Price, who was retiring, before their superior 
numbers, toward the Arkansas line. Here the wagon- 
train was left, together with the sick men, disabled 
horses, etc., in command of Lieutenant Milburn, and 
the regiment, reduced to light marching order, hast- 
ened on to report to Gen. Ben McCullough, the Confed- 
erate commander, whose headquarters were supposed to 
be somewhere near the Missouri line. Over the Boston 
mountains the command marched, the picturesque 
scenery of which extorted exclamations of admiration 
from all. Arkansas has been styled, with some degree 
of justness, the Scotland of America, and, perhaps, 
some future Scott will spring up in the midst of that ro- 
mantic landscape and recount, in epic numbers, the deeds 
enacted there when Titans grappled for the possession of 


the soil. Each day, nay, each hour, brought us tidings of 
the enemy's advance. That grand old Nestor of the 
Southern cause, Sterling Price, unable to stem the cur- 
rent of dark invasion, was leisurely retiring. As -we 
neared the scene of operations, the demonstrations of 
welcome, on the part of the inhabitants, became more 
marked, until the town of Fayetteville was reached, 
where an enthusiastic ovation awaited us. Men, wom- 
en, and children were transported with joy, and, amid 
the booming of "anvil" cannon, deafening cheers, and 
the waving of handkerchiefs, wished us "God-speed." 
The next night we encamped near Elk Horn tavern^ 
a field destined soon to become famous in the history of 
the war between the States. The headquarters of Gen- 
eral McCulloch were reached about the 1st of August, on 
Cane Creek. The Missouri State Guard, commanded by 
General Price, had formed a junction with McCulloch's 
forces, and the two commanders were awaiting re -en- 
forcements. The Missourians probably numbered 5,000 
effective men. McCulloch's immediate command, con- 
sisting of the Third Louisiana Infantry and Third Texas 
Cavalry, did not exceed 2,000 men; and General Carroll, 
with about 2,000 Arkansas militia, completed the num- 
ber of effective men under the Southern flag. All, save 
the Louisiana regiment, commanded by Colonel Louis 
Hebert, were poorly armed, the latter having Missis- 
sippi rifles,, were a well- uniformed, disciplined, and 
brave regiment. Thus, we ascertain, that the Confed- 
erate forces did not exceed 9,000 men, and they mostly 
raw recruits, with no drill instruction, and but little dis- 
cipline. The enemy probably numbered 12,000 men, 
but this disparity in numbers is of but little moment 
when the greater disparity of arms, discipline, and mu- 
nitions of war, generally, are taken into account. The 
enemy was largely composed of United States regulars, 
and his volunteer regiments, too, were armed with the 
latest and most improved weapons. The hostile armies 
were separated from each other by an interval of about 


five miles; upon which semi-neutral ground the Mis- 
souri cavalry was incessantly engaging that of the Fed- 
erals in skirmishes and affairs of outposts. Here were 
seen, for the first time by our command, evidences of 
that vandalism which characterized the Federal soldiery 
throughout the war, and with which we were soon 
familiarized. A farm-house, deserted by its inmates at 
the Yankees' approach — which act proclaimed their 
Southern sympathies — had been occupied by the sol- 
diers, and the most reckless waste and destruction in- 
dulged in, apparently, in a mere spirit of wanton devil- 
try. Here we filled our haversacks with three days' 
ratons, and drew ten rounds of ammunition. When 
the eighty rounds are remembered that we drew daily, 
and fired away, too, in the Atlanta campaign, this first 
year's soldiering seems like a "tempest in a tea-pot" — 
not that we didn't have warm work, for the brave and 
ill-fated Lyon struggled stubbornly for victory even 
when all hope had fled his cause. With the break of 
day, the advance commenced; the Missouri cavalry in 
front, the infantry in the center, and the Texas regi- 
ment on the left, or rear. All were in momentary ex- 
pectation the "ball would open," but the wily Lyon, 
doubtful as to the numbers of McCulloch's recent re- en- 
forcement, preferred to retire himself, and, by skillful 
manoeuvring, compel the Confederate generals to dis- 
cover their real strength. Since crossing the Missouri 
line, each man had acted as his own purveyor of sup- 
plies, and those supplies consisted almost exclusively of 
green corn, consequently, we were wolfish, and indulged 
in bright fancies of capturing the Federal army, bag 
and baggage (that always was the programme in those 
brave old days), and thereby bettering our commis- 

Late in the afternoon of August 2, we encamped on 
the field destined to 2:0 down to the latest posterity as 
the "Battle-field of Oak Hills." Price's army occupied 
the road leading to Springfield; McCulloch's troops were 


encamped on, and adjacent to, Wilson Creek, about one 
and a half miles in the rear of Price. Lyon had retired 
to Springfield, which town he now occupied. For sever- 
al days we remained in camp here. Scouting, skirmish- 
ing with the enemy's pickets, and procuring forage for 
man and beast, principally occupied the attention of the 
men. Captain Frank Taylor, of Company C, made a gal- 
lant dash into a detachment, guarding a train loaded 
with supplies for Lyon, routing the detachment, taking 
a number of prisoners, and capturing the entire train. 

On the afternoon of August 9, orders were issued to 
prepare three days' rations, clean up guns, and be pre- 
pared to advance on Springfield, at a moment's notice. 
The men hailed the order with acclamations of delight, 
but just about sun- setting, the order to march was 
countermanded, by reason of the threatening aspect of 
the heavens, and the men ordered to lie on their arms. 
This latter order extinguished the fires of enthusiasm, 
but, as the sequel proved, it was a precaution that saved 
the army. For, had we been negligently encamped, ex- 
pecting no advance by the enemy, instead of achieving 
a victory, we must inevitably have been routed and cap- 
tured, surrounded and surprised, as we were. And had 
we advanced upon Springfield, as originally intended, 
Price's column would have encountered Lyon's main 
force in the dark of the plutonian night, and been anni- 
hilated by it. The charge has been made, and denied, 
that the Confederate generals had no pickets stationed 
that night, in consequence of the expected advance. It 
does not seem possible that two officers, having the ex- 
perience and reputation for prudence and caution that 
both Price and McCulloch enjoyed, would have thus left 
their commands to surprise. But if pickets were sta- 
tioned, they were of no service, for the first intimation 
our regiment had that the enemy was near, was the re- 
port of Siegel's cannon and the whistling of shell just 

Lyon and the Confederate commander had conceived 


the same plan of attack, and resolved to execute the 
same at about the same time, thus furnishing one of 
the most singular synchronisms that we ever remember 
having read of in this or any other war. In pursuance 
of this plan, Siegel was to turn the entire Confederate 
position, by taking a circuitous line of march, and open 
fire at daylight from his position immediately in our 
rear. Lyon was to advance in command of the main 
force, leisurely, not discovering his advance to Price 
until Siegel' s signal -gun announced him in position. 
The entire plan of battle, so far, was carried out to the 
letter. Siegel formed in our rear, and his cannon 
boomed our reveille that morning. On our side, the sur- 
prise was complete. Price had intimation that the 
enemy was upon him a few moments before the artillery 
opened. Instantly, the command: "To horse!" was 
given, and the regiment marched out into an open field 
to await orders from General MDCulloch. In passing a 
rail-fence, the second battalion of the regiment became 
cut off from the first, and took up position in column of 
fours near the scene of the late camp. Siegel, however 
having changed his position by crossing the creek, now 
opened upon them a heavy fire of grape and canister. 
Being without a head, and having no orders to execute, 
Captian H. P. Mabry, a cool, brave and determined of- 
ficer, assumed command, and by a skillful movement, 
extricated the battalion from its unpleasant position. 

By this time, the battle had become general. Lyon 
had opened upon Price along his entire line, and the 
Louisiana regiment and Arkansas infantry were engag- 
ing Siegel warmly. The rattle of musketry, and the 
thunder of artillery, were deafening. The hoarse shells 
groaned their solemn warning high in air, and the 
whistling minnie- balls sounded many a poor 
fellow's requiem; while the shouts of the combatants 
rose often above the pandemonium of battle. The brave 
Louisianians would have routed Siegel alone, as they 
charged his left wing, driving it back in the utmost 


confusion. Not so the brave, but raw militia. The' en- 
emy — United States regulars — were pressing them heav- 
ily, and their line was beginning to waiver, when Gen- 
eral McCullough rode up to Colonel Greer, and, in- a 
few words, pointed out the state of affairs, and directed 
him to charge the advancing enemy. "Boys," shouted 
Oolonel Greer, "remember you are Texans! Forward! 
trot! gallop! charge!" The enthusiastic shouts that 
greeted the latter order would have done justice to 
Cooper's Choctaw warriors. On! irresistibly on! the 
regiment swept. They were upon the Federals before a 
bayonet was fixed, and over the routed blue-coats it 
swept with the impetuosity on an alpine avalanche, as 
revolver and rifle dashed out many a life. 

This sealed the fate of Siegel's command. They 
were routed and flying before the victorious Confeder- 
ates, in all directions. Siegel, adopting the cry of the 
French at Waterloo : "Save himself who can!" suc- 
ceeded in saving his bacon by the swiftness of his steed, 
and furnished a literal illustration of the truth of the 
doggerel : 

"He who fights and runs away, 

Will live to fight another day." 

Siegel disposed of, General McCulloch hastened, with 
his entire command, to the assistance of General Price, 
who was hard pressed by his vigorous assailant. Cap- 
tain H. P. Mabry, in command of a squdron, continued 
the pursuit of Siegel's broken and demoralized columns. 
Price and his brave Missourians had sustained the 
brunt of the battle, unaided, against greatiy superior 
numbers. Charge after charge, the brave and deter- 
mined Lyon made at the head of his columns in person. 
Learning of Siegel's discomfiture, he fought with haste 
and impetuosity, but but kept his men well in hand; and 
had he not fallen, the issue, possibly, might have been 
different. His fall was the signal for the shameful flight 
of his army, which deserted the dying hero -chieftain to 
the mercies of his triumphant, but magnanimous, en- 


emy. They were unworthy of their leader; for, how- 
ever much we may denounce the fanatical views of 
Lyon, and his intense hatred of every thing Southern, 
there is no question as to his being a strategist of the 
highest order of genius, and as brave and resolute to 
execute, as he was cool and sagacious to plan. He had 
maneuvered Price out of Missouri, and outgeneraled 
both Price and McCulloch, at the battle of Oak Hills. 
Had Sieg'el maintained his position with any credibility, 
Lyon could have put into execution other plans, which, 
doubtless, his fertile resources afforded him. But, as it 
was, he had no alternative but to strike as harl and 
rapidly as possible, thus reducing an excellently - 
planned battle, in which science should have performed 
a conspicuous part, to a mere brute contest. Though 
defeated, he displayed remarkable traits of character 
that stamped him as a master mind; and, had he lived, 
he certainly would have attained to eminence in the 
profession of arms. He sealed his convictions with his 
life's blood — falling within twenty steps of Price's line, 
where the missiles of death, like the Persian arrows at 
Thermopylae were so numerous as to obscure the light 
of the sun — and his foemen upon that well- contested 
field, willingly drop this pebble above his tomb. 

As tending to further illustrate the subject, and, at 
the same time, present both sides of the question, as the 
readiest means of reconciling the discrepant statements 
of parties attached to different commands, on that mem- 
orable occasion, the annexed interview of T. L. Snead, 
Chief of Staff to General Price, with a correspondent of 
the Cincinnati Enquirer, is reproduced : 

"Lyon," said Colonel Snead, "was the greatest man 
I ever knew. That has been my statement everywhere. 
I always felt it, and always said it. The day we had 
that memorable interview of six hours with him at the 
Planter's House, St. Louis, he was Jeff. Davis over 
again, but not as narrow and prejudiced as Davis. He 
was Davis, however, in intensity and tenacity, and about 


the leanness and height of Davis. We were to hold the 
interview in order to see if war could be prevented. I 
am the survivor of it. Claib Jackson and Sterling Price 
were the ablest politicians of Missouri ; Price at the head 
after the death of Colonel Benton. I was the Governor's 
secretary. Lyon came there with Frank Blair, jr., and 
General Conant. Such was his force, clearness, and 
real genius, that he met these old politicians at every 
point, conceding nothing, but never discourteous, his 
reason and his will equal. The whole party felt him to 
be the master mind, and the Federal historians do not 
err when they put him down as the greatest general they 
produced — greater than any produced on both sides west 
of the Mississippi river. Lyon advanced into that room, 
a little, red-bearded, red-haired, precise, positive, plain 
man. He sat down, and crossed one leg over the other 
stiffly, and his face was serious and stern. He spoke 
each word separate from the other, pronouncing the 
little words, like my and to, with as much emphasis as 
the longer ones. He raised his right arm, automatically 
as the conversation proceeded, and brought it down with 
a jerk, the forefinger extended, yet never speaking 
higher or lower than at first. We felt the sense of war 
and government in all his bearing. 'I shall take but a 
small part in this conference,' said Lyon; 'Mr. Blair is 
familiar with this question, and knows the views of my 
government, and has its full confidence; what he has to 
say will have my support.' Yet, in half an hour, he 
took the case out of Blair's mouth, and advanced to the 
front, and Frank Blair was as dumb as he had been. 
The United States could never have been typified by a 
more invincible mind and presence. It was three 
o'clock when the meeting broke up. The last attempt 
Jackson made, was to have both sides agree not to re- 
cruit troops in Missouri. Lyon arose: 'Rather than 
agree that my government shall concede to your govern- 
ment one ioto of authority as to one man to be recruited, 
one inch of ground of this State to be divided in alleg- 


iance, or neutralized, between my government and your 
government, I will see all of us under the sod.' Then 
taking out his watch stiffly, he said: 'You shall have safe 
conduct out of my lines for one hour. Meantime, you 
can get your dinner.' It was now three o'clock. We 
took our dinner in haste, and left St. Louis by an ex- 
press-train, and, if we had not burned the bridges be- 
hind us, he would have caught us before we reached 
Jefferson City, for he marched at once. Price had sol- 
dierly respect for him, and delivered up his body from 
the field of battle. It was found deserted a second time 
in the streets of Springfield. I then gave it to Mrs. 
Phelps, wife of the present Governor of Missouri, and 
sent men to bury it in the grave-yard at Springfield. 
Lyon followed us with a determination unparalleled in 
that war, and he went under the sod, in fulfillment of 
his vow." (Mr. Snead was Price's Adjutant- general at 
the time of the battle, as Mcintosh, of Georgia, was Mc- 
Culloch's). "Mcintosh was a better soldier than Mc- 
Culloch, who was indecisive and faint of confidence. 
Price was a fine old officer, who had never lost a battle, 
and felt, like all Missourians, that the place to fight 
Lyon was in Missouri, and not to fall back to Arkansas. 
McCulloch commanded the Confederate army proper, of 
3,000 men. Price commanded the Missouri State Guard 
of 8,000 men. The Confederate government, including 
Jeff. Davis, seemed indifferent about Missouri, and did 
not regard her as having properly seceded. Price was 
a Major- General — McCulloch only a Brigadier. The 
latter hesitated about marching upon Springfield, and 
was inclined to return to Arkansas. One day, Price 
rode up on his horse. He had a loud voice, and a pos- 
itive address, and always spoke to McCulloch as if he 
considered the latter an inferior. 

"Do you mean to march into Missouri, and attack 
General Lyon, General McCulloch?' 

"I have not received permission from Mr. Davis to do 
so, sir,' answered McCulloch; 'my instructions leave me 
in doubt whether I would be justifiable in doing so.' 


"Now, sir, said Price, still in a loud, imperious tone, 
'I have commanded in more battles than you ever saw, 
General McCulloch; I have three times as many troops 
as you have; I am of higher rank than you are, and I 
am twenty years your senior in age. I waive all these 
things, General McCulloch, and, if you will march into 
Missouri, I will obey your orders, and give you the 
whole command, and all the glory to be won there.' 

"McCulloch said he was then expecting a dispatch 
from Mr. Davis, and would take Price at his word, if it 
was favorable. The dispatch came, and the army ad- 
vanced, with McCulloch in supreme command. After 
McCulloch had advanced awhile, he again grew irreso- 
lute, and, instead of moving on Springfield direct, he 
halted out at Wilson's Creek, twelve miles or so south of 
that city, Price rode up to him one day, and found him 
making diagrams on the ground with a stick. Price 
bawled out: General McCulloch, are you going to at- 
tack Lyon, or not?' McCulloch said that he was unde- 
cided. 'Then,' cried Price, 'I want my own Missouri 
troops, and I will lead them against Lyon, myself if they 
are allpdlled in the action; and you, General McCulloch, 
may go where in the devil you please.' McCulloch was 
thus exasperated into promising an attack. It was ar- 
ranged to move on the very night that Lyon moved, and 
by three columns, upon Springfield. In anticipation of 
this movement, McCulloch drew in his pickets, and see- 
ing some clouds and threatening weather arising, he 
ordered the troops to lay on their arms, and did not 
again advance his pickets. This led to the complete 
surprise effected by Lyon in the morning. At four 
o'clock, on the morning of the battle, August 10, 1861, 
McCulloch rode over to Price's headquarters, which 
were pitched in a sort of cow^yard, by a little farm-house 
down in a hollow. While Price, McCulloch, Churchill, 
and Snead were taking breakfast at the earliest dawn, a 
man came in from the front, where Rains was posted, 
and said he had an important message. The Yankees 



were advancing full 30,000 strong, and were on Rains' 
line already. 'O, pshaw!' exclaimed McCulloch, 'that 
is only another of Rains' scares.' They then went on 
eating, until another man came and reported that the 
enemy was not more than a mile away, and right on 
Rains' column as they lay on their arms. McCulloch 
again said it was nonsense; but Price was excited. He 
thundered out to Snead : 'Order my troops, sir, under 
arms, and in line of battle at once, and have my horses 
saddled!' He had hardly spoken these words, when the 
little group of men looked up from the cow-yard to 
where the hills were rising, line on line, above them, 
and on the clear, morning perspective, they saw Tot- 
ten's battery unlimbered on the top of a hill, less than 
three-quarters of a mile distant, and before he had 
thrown the first shot, Siegel's battery in the rear also 
pealed out, and the balls from those two cannon crossed 
each other right over the hollow in which Price's troops 
were lying. The surprise was perfect. General 
McCulloch hastened back to his headquarters, 
and put his troops in motion against Siegel. In 
a very little time, Siegel was whipped oat. Price, 
in the meantime, had to encounter Lyon. The contest 
was spirited and deadly, and the weather like fighting in 
a furnace. Price's columns were reeling before Lyon's 
attacks, when he sent Colonel Snead to ask McCulloch 
if he could spare him a battalion of Missourians that 
were not properly in McCulloch's command. McCul- 
loch then placed himself at the head of the Missouri 
column, with certain other troops, and came back over 
the field to Price's relief. It was this re- enforcement 
that caused the death of Lyon, as Colonel Snead be- 
lieves ; for, seeing fresh troops advancing on the South- 
ern side, Lyon waved his sword, and led the counter-at- 
tack, and was shot dead. It was but a few minutes 
after Lyon fell before the battle ceased." 

The foregoing is reproduced, in justice to the Missou- 
rians, for the reader must understand that there was 


foolish antagonism engendered between the troops of 
the rival generals, which was fanned into a blaze by a 
silly controversy conducted through the public journals 
of the land, by one Mr. Tucker, on the part of General 
Price, and by John Henry Brown, on the part of Gener- 
al McCulloch, which seriously impaired the efficiency of 
the army. But, in justice to "Ben McCulloch" — name 
ever dear to every true Texan — we can not allow the 
charge of indecision to rest against the character of 
him who was decided in all things. His summary dis- 
posal of Siegel was the highest evidence of prompt de- 
cision. We would not detract one iota from the well- 
earned fame of Price and his noble Missourians, but it 
is but justice to place on record the fact that Ben Mc- 
Culloch displayed the high qualities of a commanding 
general on that occasion. He comprehended the situa- 
tion at a glance, and decision came as if by intuition. 
He shared all the dangers of the field with the meanest 
of his men. But, as it will be more appropriate in a fu- 
ture chapter to dwell at length upon the character of 
General McCulloch, we will dismiss the subject until 
that time. 

In Company A, Third Texas Cavalry, was an unadult- 
erated specimen from Erin, of the name of B. Thomas. 
Mr. Thomas rode an incorrible horse, who would eat the 
tether that bound him to a tree, and, being loose, he 
would devour whatever was eatable in camp. This 
equine marauder had pursued his evil bent to such an 
extent, that many of the victims had become exasper- 
ated, and declared if Mr. Thomas did not devise xieans 
for securing the horse, they would kill him — the horse. 
As Mr. Thomas would have rather suffered crucifixion, 
head down, than to have been left afoot in Missouri, he 
procured a chain and padlock, with which he managed 
to secure the marauder. When Siegel's battery opened, 
just before dawn on that memorable morning, and the 
bugle rang out "to horse!" Mr. Thomas discovered that 
the merchanism of his lock was not perfect, for the 


"bloody thing wouldn't worruck." Siegel advanced, 
and the camp-ground became a battle-field. No one 
thought of Mr. Thomas until the command returned to 
camp in the evening, when lo! there stood the horse un- 
scathed, and locked securely to a tree that had been 
literally peeled by the bullets. "Be thevargin!" ex- 
claimed a husky voice from the dense bushes upon the 
creek; "boys, is the sthorm over till last?" It was Mr. 
Thomas, who had sought refuge in the bushes from the 
"inimy;" and, strange indeed, he had been as miracul- 
ously preserved as had the horse. 

Another member of the same regiment was wounded 
in the charge upon Seigel's command, and left upon the 
field for dead. A party of Federal fugitives passing 
that way, robbed him of hat, boots, money. The ghouls 
felt his pulse and pronounced him dead, else he believes 
they would have administered the coup de grace with a 
bayonet. An original character, of the same regiment, 
was Mr. Brazil, who originally hailed from Buncombe 
county, Tar river, North Carolina. Mr. Brazil had a 
dozen ears of green corn on the fire when Seigel opened 
the matinee, which he swore he wouldn't leave for all the 
d — d Dutch in hell — for, be it known, that Lyon's army 
was composed so largely of Germans, that they were not 
called by the Confederates "Yanks," but "Dutch." 
When Mr. Brazil was satisfied the corn was cooked 
thoroughly, he took the dozen ears up in his arms, 
mounted his "war hoss," and with his old musket, as 
long as a fence-rail, lying in his lap, went jogging along 
in the direction he supposed the regiment had taken, 
while all his faculties were centered on an ear of corn 
upon which he was munching. "Hello! my man !" ex- 
claimed an officer, as he rode up to one of Siegel's regi- 
ments, "Where are you bound, so early?" "O, by ," 

exclaimed Brazil, with his mouth full of corn, "I am 
gwine to ketch me a Dutchman, T am, you bet!" "Take 
him in, boys," fell upon the startled ears of the aston- 
ished Brazil, like the knell of doom. Mr Brazil says 


they did "take him in," and "put him through," too, 
over a hundred miles of rocky road, at double-quick, 
afoot, to Rollo. The author certifies that Mr. Brazil, on 
his return to the command, was the worst used up man 
he ever saw. This episode gave Mr. Brazil a decided 
distaste to active operations in the field, and he became 
a teamster, and held the post unto the last. The love of 
lucre tempted him to substitute for another, after the ex- 
piration of his year's service; but he had it expressly 
stipulated that he was to retain his berth in the wagon- 

When Siegel's shot began to fly pretty thick, brave, 
good old Captain Hale, who made no military preten- 
sions, called out to his company: "Git in a straight 
row, here boys ! This is the war you all have hearn 
talked about ! Them's the cannon ; them's the muskets ; 
that great big screeching thing is a bung-shell; and 
them little fellows that sing like bumble-bees, are min- 
nie-balls! Git in a straight row; we're gwine to work 
now!" And the brave old man and his gallant "boys" 
did good work on that memorable day. 

The Third Texas Cavalry occupied the town of Spring- 
field the day succeeding the battle, and the regimental 
flag was hoisted above the court-house, during which 
ceremony Major Chilton delivered an eloquent address 
to the assembled citizens and soldiers. Many Southern 
sympathizers, imprisoned merely for opinion's sake, 
were released from confinement in the county jail. 

The body of the ill-fated Lyon was delivered to Mrs. 
Phelps, wife of the then member of Congress from the 
Springfield district, and at the present writing (1878), 
the Democratic Governor of Missouri, by whom it was 
interred on the premises of their homestead, two miles 
north of the town. 

The author regrets that he can give no sketch of the 
life of the gallant, though unfortunate, Lyon. 

The Federal loss in the engagement was severe — pro- 
bably amounting to 1,000 killed, and twice that number 


prisoners and wounded. The Confederate loss did not 
exceed 250, all told. General McCullooh, after exchang- 
ing for the few Confederates in the hands of the enemy, 
dismissed the remainder of his prisoners, telling them 
that he had rather fight, than feed them. 

The route of the Federal army was complete, and had 
the Confederate cavalry pursued, as the Prussians did 
at Waterloo, not a man would have reached St. Louis, 
which city — and it was the key to the West — must, un- 
doubtedly, have been occupied by the Southern army. 
Unfortunately, there is recorded but few instances in 
which the Confederate soldier improved the advantages 
of victory. Had the enemy been pressed at Manassas 
and Oak Hills, Washington and St. L,ouis would have 
rewarded the efforts of the Confederates with bright 
promises of speedy and complete success. Secession, 
though it might have been a constitutional remedy, i. e., 
in conformity to the spirit of the organic law, was a 
Caesarian remedy, of so radical a nature as to be re- 
sorted to only in the extremest case. By abating no 
right under the Federal compact, the occupation of 
Washington would have been the possession of the gov- 
ernment. The true policy, and only hope of the Con- 
federacy, was in a spirited and aggressive warfare. 
Every thing should have been subordinated to efforts 
calculated to render the army efficient. One year should 
have ended the war; and it would have done so, could 
Southern statesmen have foregone the pleasure of split- 
ting theoretical hairs, and came to the aid of the army 
with a tender of the resources of the whole country. The 
army preformed its duty; the men performed prodigies 
of valor, and the officers were unsurpassed by any on 
the planet. But the crisis did not develop a single states- 
man capable of comprehending the magnitude of the 
struggle. Happily, now, these issues will arise no more 
to distract the American people from the high road to 
prosperity. If this Union is destined ever to be rent as- 
under, the entering wedge will not be applied by the 
South. This much is certain. 


Chapter XXIII. 




Captain Mabry pursued the routed and flying column 
of Siegel to a mill, situated on a creek some five miles 
from the field, capturing 150 prisoners. "And," says 
the MS. of Captain Dunn, "the road was thickly strewn 
with dead Federals." Siegel managed to retain pos- 
session of one piece of artillery up to this time, but, 
Mabry pressing him so close, he now consigned the 
whipped dog of war to the depths of the stream. No of- 
ficial account has been given to the public, so far as we 
know, of the losses sustained by the enemy in the battle. 
The fighting was at very close range, and the mortality 
immense. The dead and wounded literally encumbered 
the ground. With the exception of Mabry 's pursuit, the 
enemy was allowed to seek safety in flight. An ener- 
getic pursuit by 1,000 cavalry would have bagged the 
whole fugitive mass; for never was defeat more thorough 
and demoralizing. The loss of the Texas regiment did 
not exceed ten killed and thirty wounded. 

After the battle, the sad duty devolved upon the sur- 
vivors to afford the wounded relief, and give to the dead 
the poor burial rights that they could. The duty of in- 
terring the enemy's killed also devolved upon the Con- 
federate and Missouri soldiers, a3 the humane Siegel 
made no proposals to perform that obvious duty him- 
self. Field hospitals were erected for temporary use, at 
the most convenient points, and the merciless surgical. 


saw and knife commenced their work. The Southern 
forces occupied Springfield the next day, and to that 
town the wounded were speedily removed. The author, 
being one of the wounded, and in hospital, can certify 
that the excruciating sufferings of the poor fellows, ex- 
ceeded the heart-rending scenes of the battle-field itself. 
Here reclines a poor Arkansian, in a half-sitting posi- 
tion, being supported by rolls of blankets, with a minnie- 
bullet through his bosom. Each laborious respiration 
produces the fatal death rattte in his throat, and, though 
science knows the signet of death is fixed upon his 
clammy brow, the humane surgeons labor to alleviate 
his pain. Gradually the breathing becomes less fre- 
quent, and the horrible gurgling rattle more weird and 
prolonged. A silence ensues, and then a rustling from 
his distorted mouth, like the noiseless flapping of angel's 
wings which we hear, independent of the external sense, 
and the suffering soldier has passed from earth, with a 
smile of ineffable sweetness and confidence breaking 
upon his lips. Did he, in passing the intermediate 
sphere, with one foot on the shores of Time, catch a 
glimpse of the cheering promise beyond? None now 
may know. Many other touching scenes might be 
added to this; but being in close proximity to the Ar- 
kansian, and an eye-witness of his death, the picture 
has remained stamped upon my mind as vividly as on 
that August day in 1861. General McCulloch, with that 
humanity characteristic of all noble natures, visited the 
hospitals in person, and had a cheering word for every 

The Missouri army commenced an immediate advance, 
and, to the deep chagrin and mortification of the Con- 
federate army, we were suffered to remain in ignoble 
quietude, while our brave allies were winning new 
laurals at Lexington, and on the other fields. Whoever 
in authority was responsible for the fatal course that re- 
fused co-operation with General Price, was guilty of the 
most egregious folly capable of being committed by a 


man having the least pretension to reason and common 
sense. Engaged in the same cause, Price's defeat 
would have been our loss, as his victories were our gain. 
Yet we remained idle spectators, while the poorly-clad 
veterans of Missouri's "Old Guard" carried their 
"Grizzly Bears," from victory to victory, until over- 
whelming forces checked their splendid career; then, 
without sustaining a reverse, they sullenly retired, dis- 
puting every foot of ground with the giant enemy. No 
brighter page will adorn the history of contemporary 
struggles, than the magnificent campaigns of these bare- 
footed boys, led by their grind old chieftain. If hero- 
ism in the field, and Spartan fortitude in the midst of 
suffering and privations, had been acceptable sacrifices 
to the god of war, the rich libation of their blood would 
have invoked, successfully, the genius of victory to 
perch upon their banners. But so it was not decreed in 
the chancery of Heaven. 

General McColloch's forces remained encamped in the 
south-western portion of Missouri, doing little else than 
cooking and eating the wholesome and abundant rations 
furnished them by the commissariat, until Fremont's 
vain-glorious advance to Springfield, driving Price be- 
fore him, when the Confederate army retired to the 
"Cross Hollows," seemingly a favorite position of Gen. 
McCulloch. But as the Sixth Texas Cavalry joined us 
previous to this time, we will now take a brief review of 
its organization, regretting that the meager data availa- 
ble renders it impossible to go more into details. For 
the Sixth deserves the highest eulogium that can be 
pronounced in its praise. Composed, like the other 
regiments that early left the State, of the very best 
young men in the country, it could be relied upon to ac- 
complish any feat of daring within the prowess of hu- 
man bravery and daring. 

In August, 1861, Colonel B. Warren Stone, of Dallas, 
was commissioned a Colonel, by the President of the 
Provisional Government, and immediately issued a call", 


inviting the formation of companies. On the 6th of 
September following, the subjoined companies were or- 
ganized as the Sixth Regiment of Texas Cavalry, and 
were mustered into the service of the Confederate 
States, at Camp Bartow, in Dallas county, by Colonel 
Garland : 

Co. A, Kaufman county, Harden, Captain. 

Co. B, Kaufman county, John S. Griffith, Captain. 
Co. C, Dallas county, Fayette Smith, Captain. 

Co. D, Grayson county, Bowen, Captain. 

Co. E, Van Zandt county, Jack Wharton, Captain. 

Co. F, Dallas county, — — Gray, Captain. 

Co. G, McLennan county, P. F. Ross, Captain. 

Co. H, Bell county, White, Captain. 

Co. T, Henderson county, H. W. Burgess, Captain. 
Co. K, Collin county, J. W. Throckmorton, Captain. 
Each company averaged something over 100 men; 
the regiment aggregating 1,150. An electionof field offi- 
cers was immediately held, the Colonel also submitting 
his name for the approval of his men. The election re- 
sulted as follows: 

B. Warren Stone, of Dallas county, Colonel. 
John Summerfield Griffith, Lieutenant-Colonel. 
Private L. S. Ross, of Company G, was elected Major. 
Lieutenant D. R. Gurley, of Company G, was ap- 
pointed Adjutant. 
Captain A. J. White, of Dallas, Quartermaster. 
Captain , of Collin county, Com- 
missary of Subsistence. 

The regiment soon moved up to Collon county, and 
encamped near McKinney, and while in camp at this 
place, was reviewed by Colonel Garland. The regiment, 
being well mounted and well clad, presented a fine ap- 
pearance, upon which they were handsomely compli- 
mented by Colonel Garland. The "sound of resounding 
arms" had fallen on their ears, and the boys were eager 
impatience itself to get to the front, and bear a hand in 


the efforts of Mr. Abraham Lincoln to make history. 
After a few days' stay at McKinney, the regiment took 
up the line of march for Missouri, being, for the conven- 
ience of obtaining forage divided into three divisions, 
of which Major Ross commanded the first, Lieutenant- 
Colonel Griffith the second, and Colonel Stone the third. 
This order of march was continued until Red river was 
crossed, when the various divisions were consolidated 
again at Northtown. At this point, information reached 
Colonel Stone that a large body of hostile Indians were 
driving the command of colonel Cooperback. The regiment 
immediately commenced a forced march in the direction 
of Fort Gibson. Having reached this place, the news was 
more definate and confirmatory of the reports 
before rceived. Hopotheohola, a veteran chief, 
who had fought with the hostilesat Talladega and Horse 
Shoe, had gathered together the disaffected of all the 
tribes, and, under the designation of "Pin Indians,'' had 
taken the field in sufficient numbers as to compel the 
Confederate Indians Supeintendent, Colonel Cooper, to 
retire before him. From Fort Gibson, the regiment con- 
tinued the forced march up the Verdigris. But the wily 
old chief, hearing of Cooper's anticipated re-enforce- 
ment, turned about and retreated in the direction of 
Kansas, burning and laying waste the country along its 
route. Hopeless of overtaking the hostiles, as his horses 
were already much jaded, Colonel Stone countermarched 
and returned to Fort Gibson. From here the regiment 
proceeded leisurely to Camp Walker, in Missouri, where 
were pitched the headquarters of General McCulloch. 
After reporting to General McCulloch, the regiment then 
proceeded to Carthage, where General McCulloch was 
concentrating his cavalry, preparatory to making a raid 
into Kansas. 

On September 28th, the patriot Governor of Missouri, 
Claiborne F. Jackson, who, like the rejected Son of 
Man, literally, had not where to lay his head within the 
broad domain of the Commonwealth over which he was 


titular Chief Magistrate, with his staff and escort, ap- 
proached Carthage. Colonel Greer proceeded, at the 
head of his regiment, to do the honors of the day to the 
almost fugitive Governor, and escort him into town. 
The Governor reviewed the regiment, and took up his 
quarters in the town. On the night of the 30th, he de- 
livered an eloquent defence of the secession of Missouri, 
to a large concourse of citizens and soldiers. Standing 
upon the steps of the court-house, his silvery hair re- 
flecting the mellow beams of moonlight, he presented a 
picture of Justice wronged, and the impotency of Virtue, 
alone, to cope with the minions of Might and Wrong. 
In this address, Governor Jackson imparted to us the 
first intimation of the proposed invasion of Kansas. In 
speaking of the enormities perpetrated by the ruthless 
Kansas "Jay hawkers," upon the defenseless citizens of 
the border counties of Missouri, he raised his trembling 
hand aloft and exclaimed: "In ten days, we will turn 
upon them the most ruthless invasion known to man 
since the razing of Jerusalem to the earth, and burn the 
accursed land from Dan to Beersheba !" This retalia- 
tory programme, it is supposed, would have been carried 
out, had not the intelligence reached General McCulloch, 
at that time, of General Price's retreat from Missouri, 
closely followed by General Fremont. This General, it 
is said assumed the consequence of an eastern satrap, 
and so encumbered was he with the immense wagon- 
train necessary to transport the delicacies of his luxur- 
ious camp, that he made, but a desultory pursuit of Gen- 
eral Price; and, like the dog in pursuit of the wolf was 
not extremely anxious to overtake him. The short 
march, from St. Louis to Springfield, proved enough 
active campaigning for General Fremont, and, in the 
latter town, he established his court, and remained un- 
til the commencement of the winter season in St. Louis, 
when he removed his court to the gay capital of his sa- 
trapy. Hearing of Fremont's departure, General Mc- 
Culloch hastily placed himselt at the head of a cavalry 


force of which our Texas regiments and Whitfield's Bat- 
talion formed an integral part, and made a rapid march 
to Springfield, only to find that General Fremont, having 
rusticated, sufficiently, had leisurely returned to St. 

While Fremont was encamped at Springfield, General 
McCulloch ordered Captain Mabry with his company G, 
and Captain Cumby with company B, both of the Third 
Texas, to proceed to Springfield, or as near that town as 
they could, without risking too much the capture of their 
commands, and to ascertain approximately the number 
of the enemy, the number of his guns, and all other in- 
formation concerning him they could obtain. When 
within about ten miles of Springfield, these brave offi- 
cers were met by a regiment of Missouri cavalry that 
had been skirmishing with the enemy's pickets, the 
commander of which informed them that Fremont occu- 
pied the place with 50,000 men, and that they had better 
turn back, as their capture would be certain, if they 
proceeded any further in that direction. But these 
brave and conscientious officers did not think they had 
fulfilled the spirit of their instructions, and resolved to 
pursue their present course and risk the consequences. 
They proceeded to within eight miles of the town, and 
ascertained of a Southern sympathizer, at whose house 
they had halted to make inquiries, that the enemy was 
full 35,000 strong, and that his forces were encamped 
immediately within the limits of the town. It was judged 
inadvisable to proceed any further with the men; and, 
at the suggestion of the dauntless Mabry, Cumby re- 
mained in charge of the two companies, and himself, 
accompanied by Captain Alf . Johnson and a thoroughly 
reliable guide, set out, determined to obtain the inform- 
ation desired by General McCulloch. They proceeded 
without incident to within one mile of Springfield, and 
here fastening their horses, entered the town afoot, and 
made for the house of a well-known Southern lady. 
From her they learned that the enemy was reported to 


be 30,000 strong. Dispatching the guide for a Southern 
gentleman, from whom the desired information could be 
obtained, Mabry and Johnson proceeded to regale them- 
selves with a warm supper that had been prepared for 
them. After supper, Mabry went out into the front 
yard to ascertain if all was right, and his quick eye im- 
mediately discovered the fact that the house was sur- 
rounded by Yankees. Turning to re-enter the house, 
he was accosted by a party of five or six, who demanded 
his surrender and the yielding up of his arms. Pre- 
tending to comply, the dauntless man drew his bowie 
knife and plunged it into the heart of the spokesman, 
who dropped dead at his feet. This was the signal for a 
terrific onslaught. The infuriated Yankees closed in on 
him, while revolver after revolver rung out its murder- 
ous report. Mabry slashed right and left in the dark- 
ness with his trusty knife, and other foemen, undoubt- 
edly, felt the keenness of its edge. But he is now shot 
through the right hand and the friendly knife drops 
from his nerveless grasp at his feet. Drawing his re- 
volver with his left hand, he retreats around the house 
to where Johnson is engaged with a number of the 
enemy; for, upon the first report of fire-arms, Johnson 
jumped out of the window, and was met by a number of 
of men, who demanded his surrender. His only reply 
was from the muzzle of his shot-gun. Emptying both 
barrels of which, he, too, drew his six-shooter and con- 
tinued the bloody fray. Mabry having rejoined him, 
the two kept the enemy at bay as they retired from the 
scene, Johnson supporting himself upon the shoulder of 
Mabry, as he was severely wounded in the hip. The 
indomitable men proceeded thus until they reached their 
horses, when they made for Captain Cumby and the two 
companies. The faithfui guide, hearing the uproar, 
immediately retraced his steps, and procuring their 
overcoats, letters, etc., rejoined them at camp. Take 
this episode in all its bearing, and, I suppose, it stands 
unparalleled in all the hair-breadth escapes of the war 


for cool courage and indomitable will, Julius Caesar 
was no braver than H. P. Mabry, and the writer has 
often thought that, if Mabry had commanded at Vicks- 
burg, there would have been no surrender, of that place, 
and, ergo, no necessity for the sad finale at Appomattox 
Court-house. After reaching the command, the two 
wounded heroes had time and leisure to realize how 
hazardous had been their mission, and how narrow their 
escape. Their clothing was literally perforated by the 
enemy's balls, and it seemed that the hand of death had 
been averted only by a miracle. Of Captain Mabry's 
subsequent career, our narrative will deal. Captain 
Johnson was afterwards appointed to a Colonelcy, for 
his gallantry on this occasion, and was the commandant 
of Arkansas Post, when that place fell into the hands of 
the enemy. He was taken prisoner and died in St. 
Louis. After the reconnoissance, at Springfield, Gen- 
eral McCulloch retired toward the Arkansas line, and, 
about December 6, 1861, the various ^regiments went 
into winter quarters. 

The winter encampment of the Third was selected at 
the mouth of Frog bayou, on the Arkansas river, and 
that of the Sixth a few miles below. Captain Harris, 
the energetic Quartermaster of the Third, procured a 
saw-mill, and soon material for the erection of comfor- 
table shanties, was in abundance. As there were no 
rumors of war here, the boys commenced a life of plea- 
sure and social dissipation in the fashionable circle of 
Frog bayou. Dances — regular old-fashioned "bran- 
dances" — were the order of the night; and animated jig 
and reel followed the lively twanging of many an Arkan- 
saw Ole Bull's fiddle. Many of the boys here obtained 
furloughs for the purpose of visiting their homes. Gen. 
McCulloch went to Richmond, Virginia, the permanent 
capital of the Confederacy, and Colonel Greer obtained 
leave of absence to visit his home, which left the army 
in command of General Mcintosh, and the regiment in 
command of Lieutenant Colonel Lane. 


Chapter XXIV. 


Early in December, the Third Regiment was called 
upon to mourn the loss of their good old quar- 
termaster. In superintending the sawing of timber, 
Captain Harris carelessly allowed his clothing to be 
caught by the teeth of the circular saw, and, ere the 
team could be stooped, his body was fearfully mangled. 
He survived a day or two, and died. No regiment in 
the service had the good fortune to possess a better 
quartermaster than he, and his loss was long and ser- 
iously felt by the men. 

The festivities alluded to in the preceding chapter 
were at their height — like the celebrated ball at Brus- 
sels, immortalized by Byron — when the rude blast of 
war broke upon the diverting scene, and summoned the 
gay Adonis from blushing sweetheart and nirnble-toed 
jig, to ruder scenes in the march, the bivouac, and the 
deadly charge. The irrepressible Hopotheohola daring 
the rigors of winter as he had braved the frosts of time, 
had again flung his seditious standard to the breeze, and 
defiantly thrown down the gage of battle to General 
Cooper, who immediately commenced a periodical re- 
treat. Simultaneously with the reception of the intelli- 
gence, Colonel Mcintosh ordered out the cavalry, con- 
sisting of the Third, Sixth, and Eleventh (Young's) Tex- 
as Regiment, and Whitfield's Battallion (Texas), the 
latter two of whom had but recently joined us. Placing 
himself at the head of the column, Mcintosh gave the 


signal for the march to commence. At Van Buren, 
where the command crossed the Arkansaw river, Mcin- 
tosh's regiment of mounted infantry fell into line. A 
forced march was here begun, which terminated only 
when Fort Gibson was reached. The weather, previous- 
ly very pleasant, now became extremely cold. The 
ground was frozen, and the men suffered much from the 
bitter cold. Passing through Fort Gibson, the com- 
mand crossed a large prairie, and entered the woods be- 
yond, through which flowed the Chustenahlah creek, a 
beautiful and wild mountain brook. From this point, 
the smoke from the enemy's camp-fires wa3 plainly vis- 
ible, rising from the summits of the mountains in the 
distant perspective. The command halted on Chuste- 
nahlah creek until midnight, when Colonel Lane, 
throwing forward Company E (Third Regiment), Cap- 
tain D. M. Short commanding, as an advance guard, 
the command resumed the line of march. The march 
was continued all night without an incident to vary the 
dull monotony. About 9 p. m., Captain Short came 
upon the enemy's pickets, and drove them rapidly in 
upon the main body. The command soon arrived upon 
the scene, when it was discovered that the enemy was 
posted upon the summit of an almost inaccessible moun- 
tain. The sagacious and experienced Hopotheohola 
had selected a position impregnable by nature, and the 
veteran chieftain, with his more youthful lieutenant — 
Halleck Tschustenuga — were riding up and down the 
lines, speaking words of confidence, and imparting 
hopes of promise, in an effort to rouse their warriors to 
as sublime a devotion to the cause, and reckless disre- 
gard of consequences, as filled their own stoical bos- 
oms. The warriors, painted in the most hideous man- 
ner, and clad in the most outlandish garbs, were perpe- 
trating fantastic antics before high heaven, and the 
cat-like enemy ready for the fatal spring below. Some 
gobbled, in imitation of the turkey- gobbler; others, 
fired by a spirit of emulation, apparently, rivaled the 


coyote in howling; the game viking of the barn -yard 
would have recognized his "cock-a-doodle-doo," in the 
wild pandemonium of sounds, as would the panther, the 
catamount, and even the domestic dog. 

Colonel Mcintosh determined to charge the almost 
perpendicular mountain, on horseback. Upon the side 
next us there was but little timber to afford us shelter 
from the unerring marksmen covered by their works, 
but there were large, craggy rocks to be scaled, and 
bottomless gulches to be passed. The command was 
immediately deployed into line. The Sixth, commanded 
by Lieutenant- Colonel John S. Griffith, on the right; 
the Third, commanded by Lt.-Ool. Lane, in the center; 
the Eleventh, commanded by Colonel Wm. C. Young, 
on the left; Mcintosh's battalion of infantry supporting 
the line. Slowly the command marches to the very 
base of the last elevation, and the enemy's sharpshoot- 
ers are commencing to fire. But the impetuous Mcin- 
tosh, who can not brook a tardy skirmish salutation, or- 
ders the charge, and the intrepid Lane and Griffith, re- 
sponding, call on their men, and a thousand frenzied 
yells reply, as a thousand excited horses plunge madly 
up the steep ascent, and a thousand rifles pour such a 
leaden hail into the ranks of the astounded and terrified 
Indians, that no effort is made to hold the works, and 
the victory is won ere the battle had fairly begun. 

A vigorous pursuit was immediately commenced, and 
many hand-to-hand fights to the death occurred; for, 
however impotent the Indian may be fettered by discip- 
lined organization, individually, he knows no personal 
danger, and, taking his life in his hand, will accept the 
challenge to mortal combat with the odds against him of 
ten to one. The Indians scattered in all directions — 
having Kansas, however, for the objective point — and 
built fires, or rather made "smokes," in order to divert 
the pursuers, and cause them to relax the pursuit. 
One instance of their stoical indifference to death will 
suffice : An old warrior fired upon a party of eight or 


ten from behind a tree. The men did not wish to kill 
him, and used even entreaties to induce him to surren- 
der; but, with death imminent, he continued to load his 
old rifle with a sublime indifference never attained by the 
Cynic philosophers of Greece, and, having loaded, he 
coolly proceeded with the priming, when his admiring 
foes were compelled to dash out his brave old life. 
"Only an Indian killed !" but who knows what the 
hopes were that this old man had founded upon his 
cause? Go, votaries of the "Lost Cause," to the 
crumbling stones of your dismantled altars, and invoke, 
if ye can, the spirit of 1861. It is dead! dead in soul 
and body, and no wraith even represents it in the phan- 
tom processions of the shadowy land of Weir ! The 
victors at Atlanta and Appomattox hold it even lighter 
than you regard the cause of the poor old warrior, lying 
there in the silent wilderness before you, with his crim- 
son life -tide ebbing and splashing away! Unhappy 
man, in the brief span of life, is but a puppet! The 
Roman emperor weighs not more in the balances of Di- 
vine justice than does the savage Indian; each leaves 
the impress of his foot upon the sands of time, and the 
first returning wave obliterates all trace of empire and 
tribe alike. 

An inventory of the captured prisoners and property 
showed: Two hundred and fifty women and children; 
forty or fifty negroes; five hundred head of ponies; 
seventy or eighty wagons ; one hundred head of beef 
cattle; five hundred head of sheep; ten thousand (more 
or less) dogs; besides buffalo-robes, beads, belts, and 
other trinkets too numerous and infinitesimal to name. 
One article found among the trinkets, invaluable by 
reason of its age and antecedents, was a silver medal, 
struck in commemoration of a treaty of peace concluded 
between the Creeks and the British Government, in the 
year 1694. What became of this souvenir, the author 
knows not; but hopes it has been returned, ere this,, to 
its original owners. 


The loss of the command was slight, but no correct 
list, it is thought, of the casualties, is now extant. 
Lieutenant Durham, a young and promising officer of 
Company B, Third Regiment, was mortally wounded, 
and died soon after. Company A, of the Third Regi- 
ment, was ably commanded by Orderly- Sergeant R. B. 
Gause, whose many noble qualities deserve that he 
should be mentioned; but the author knows no eulogium 
that he could pronounce in his praise more appropriate 
than that pronounced by the great Napoleon on Baron 
Larry; "He was," said the Emperor, "the most virtu- 
ous man I ever knew." 

That the United States had stirred up this revolt 
among the Indians, the United States rifles with which 
they were largely armed, amply demonstrated. But the 
emissaries of the Federal Government were powerless 
again to cause the Indian to offer himself as food for 
powder and lead. The crushing defeat of Chustenahlah 
put a period to all hopes of creating a diversion in that 
direction. Poor old Hopotheohola, who had done all 
that individual sagacity and intrepidity could, with the 
limited means at his command, fell a victim to his dis- 
comfitted warriors' desire for revenge and blood. He 
was assassinated by unknown parties soon after the 
battle. The campaign proper terminated with the bat- 
tle of Chustenahlah, and the command of Colonel Mcin- 
tosh returned to their respective quarters. In the case 
of the Third Regiment, the boys were glad enough to 
return to their comfortable quarters, and resume the so- 
cial duties and pleasures that had been so unceremoni- 
ously broken up by the late call to arms. Colonel 
Greer, soon after this, returned, being accompanied by 
his charming and good lady. We have spoken else- 
where of the angelic ministrations of Mrs. Greer, at the 
bedside of the sick soldiers, and would again repeat all 
that we there wrote; and did the language admit of 
more positive expressions, they should be employed in 
commendation of her Christian deeds. 


About the latter portion of February, the men who 
had been home on furlough reported for duty, and 
many fresh volunteers came, also, to swell the ranks of 
the regiment. Of course, these neophytes in the art of 
war looked upon their veteran friends of twelve months' 
service as perambulating military encyclopedias of use- 
ful knowledge. The veteran felt his importance, and, 
oracle-like, delivered his replies to the many questions 
by metaphorical allusions, and with an air of freezing 
indifference. A new recruit, upon one occasion, desired 
to be informed, by a veteran friend, how man Yankees 
he had killed. The impossibility of ascertaining this 
fact, in a general engagement, was shown by the vete- 
ran. "Did you ever kill one?" persisted the recruit. 
"Did you ever shoot one, and see the blood spout out — 
see it, yourself ?" "It is better," replied the veteran, 
"to be in doubt whether we ever killed one, than to 
have the conscience tormented with the belief that we 
killed them all." This was satisfactory. 

While in winter-quarters, as Adjutant M. D. Ector 
was attempting to suppress some boisterous noise in the 
camps of one of the companies, he was assaulted by two 
of the men, who were subsequently court-martialed, 
and sentenced to be dishonorably discharged and 
drummed out of the regiment. The sentence was se- 
vere, and the unfortunate men, who had proved them- 
selves good and brave soldiers, felt the disgrace deeply. 

The negroes, and a portion of the women and children 
captured at Chustenahlah, were kept under guard at 
this post for several weeks. What Ultimately was the 
fate of the poor unfortunates, we know not. They pre- 
sented a forlorn and pitiful picture — bereft of all they 
held dear — and the author's heart, on more than one oc- 
casion, went out in sympathy to them. 


On the evening of the 25th, as the Third Texas was 


busy in the work of pitching camp, two hundred war- 
riors, as if they had emerged from the bosom of the 
earth, were discovered in line of battle, not exceeding 
one-half mile, in the immediate front of the regiment, 
calmly contemplating the actions of the busy and un- 
conscious men before them. Major Chilton rode out 
about halfway toward them, and signified, by signs, for 
one to approach him, which request was immediately 
complied with. The Indians refused to speak the 
American language, by which token Major Chilton was 
soon convinced that they were hostiles, and abandoned 
the conference; whereupon, the silent cavalcade as 
mysteriously disappeared in the mountains as it had ap- 
peared. Just before night, on this evening, Sam. Mar- 
tin, an old Indian fighter, discerned the smoke of the 
hostile encampment rising above the summits of the 
mountains, in the dim distance, and forthwith reported 
the fact to Colonel Lane, and from this moment, all fears 
of the enemy's retreat were dispelled. 

Hopotheohola had, at one time, exercised the func- 
tions of Chief of the Creek Nation, and was displaced 
by the able and favorite "White King," Mcintosh, who 
was succeeded by his son, ' Chili, who, as chief, con- 
deluded a treaty with General Pike, on the part of the 
Confederate States, in 1861. A bitter feud existed be- 
tween Hopotheohola and the Mcintosh family, and for 
Chili Mclnfosh to espouse the cause of the South, was 
sufficient reason why his hereditary enemy should cast 
his fortunes on the opposite side. The full-bloods gen- 
erally sided with Hopotheohola, while the wealth and in- 
telligence of the -tribe arrayed themselves under the 
banner of the legitimate chief, Mcintosh, who proved 
himself an able leader, a sagacious ruler, and a man of 
unswerving fidelity to the cause he had espoused. In- 
deed, there were instances in which the civilized Indians 
signalized themselves for high courage, fortitude, and 
chivalry, that would have reflected credit on knights of 
the "Round-Table;" conspicuous among whom must 


always stand the names of Chili Mcintosh and Colonel 
Stan Waitie. 

Colonel Mcintosh's plan of campaign comprised the 
capture of the enemy as well as his defeat; and, to this 
end, Colonel D. H. Cooper, commanding an Indian 
brigade, to which was temporarily attached the Ninth 
Regiment of Texas Cavalry, and Whitfield's Texas Bat- 
tallion — both of which organizations, subsequently, were 
integral parts of "Ross' Brigade" — marched up the 
Arkansas river with the object of cutting off the retreat 
of the enemy, while the command of Colonel Mcintosh, 
as before stated, marched up the Verdigris, and attacked 
Hopotheohola on the heights of Chustenahlah. The 
immediate object of the movement was defeated by the 
precipitancy of the attack, and the immediate giving 
way of the Indian line. But the indefatigable Whitfield, 
the gallant Colonel, Sims of the Ninth, and Colonel 
Cooper, with his brigade of friendly Indians, pur- 
sued them far into the inhospitable plains. (The pur- 
suers were forced to turn back, as their rations were 
consumed, and they had already tested the quality of 
broiled horse-flesh. The plains were utterly destitute 
of game. The weather was intensely cold, and, in ad- 
dition to the pangs of hunger, the men suffered no little 
from this cause.) 

Major G. W. Chilton, of the Third Texas Cavalry, 
while acting with conspicuous gallantry, was wounded 
by a rifle-ball, slightly, in the head; but, disregarding 
which, he remained at his post until the last gun was 
fired. Major M. J. Brinson of the Ninth Texas Cavalry, 
bore himself, throughout the engagement, with marked 
gallantry; and, by his fearless demeanor, contributed 
no little to the final result. The author's friend, Harry 
Bell, of Company A, Third Texas Cavalry, was severely 
though not mortally, wounded by a frightful bullet-hole 
in the right breast. 

At Fort Gibson, Lieutenant-Colonel Lane obtained 
leave of absence, and returned home, leaving Major G. 


W. Chilton in command of the Third Texas Cavalry, 
which leisurely continued the march to winter quarters. 
At Van Buren, Major Chilton munificently "stood 
treat," and purchased a barrel of choice whisky, which 
the boys of the regiment disposed of by drinking fre- 
quent "potations pottle deep," and all got as merry as 
merry could be, and many didn't get home till morning, 
and some, only after the lapse of two or three days; but, 
in the case of these latter, whether their absence was at- 
tributable to the effects of Arkansaw corn -juice, or to 
Arkansaw belles, deponent sayeth not. 

One of the unostentatious heroes of Chustenahlah, 
was B. S. Triplett, the author's friend, and to whom he 
was indebted for many an act of kindness. Brave and 
loyal "old Tripp," after passing through the hundreds 
of battles and skirmishes of the four years of war, fell 
just at its close by the hands of an assassin. Perhaps 
it was better so! He never lived to look upon the 
"conquered banner," and to feel that experience of 
death in life that he had outlived his usefulness. Death 
is generally accounted the ultimate loss; but death often 
relieves life of many burdens too grievous to be borne; 
and, it is doubtful, if we should not look upon the white 
horse and his specter rider as friends of humanity, in- 
stead of remorseless foes. 


Chapter XXV. 


The peaceful, semi-domestic scene that characterized 
the sojourn in winter- quarters, were of short duration, 
for soon the summons came for us to mount and go forth 
to meet a more powerful foe than, the one so recently 
vanquished on the heights of Chustenahlah. The heroic 
Price had made a winter campaign into Missouri, and 
the "Old Guard" had added fresh laurels to their fame 
by the victory of Dry wood, and on other fields. About 
the middle of February, General Curtis took the field, at 
the head of about 40,000 men magnificently equipped, 
and abundantly provided with all the murderous machin- 
ery of war. Price had halted at Springfield, purposing 
to spend the remainder of the winter there, in the re- 
organization of his army. In an address to the people 
of Missouri, he eloquently exclaimed : "Give me 50,000 
men, and Missouri shall march to victory with the tread 
of a giant!" At Carthage, in the autumn past, a quo- 
rum of the Missouri Legislature bad convened, and for- 
mally served her connection with the United States, and, 
in conformity to this "Act," General Price was muster- 
ing the State Guard into the Confederate service; and, 
in the midst of his labors, he was apprized of the enemy's 
advance. The brave old man did not move until the 
enemy was upon him. Then, placing his raw recruits 
in front, with the immense wagontrain, that he had filled 
with supplies from the fertile fields of Missouri, he com- 

*HE GREAT WAIfc. 169 

menced his slow and stubborn retreat. And woe to the 
enemy's column that had the temerity to beard the old 
lion in his den when he defiantly stood at bay, as he of- 
ten did, to give his train time, for they were invariably 
driven from the field by the dauntless veterans of Lex- 
ington and Drywood. Dispatches announcing the war- 
like situation of affairs beyond the line, were sent Gen- 
eral McCulloch, and soon his forces were en route for 
the theater of action. 

Intelligence reached us that the enemy had driven 
General Price beyond "Cross Hollows," and that he 
was making demonstrations. on the town of Fayetteville. 
In passing the Boston mountains, the weather was in- 
tensly cold, and the men, though warmly clothed, suf- 
fered no little. On either side of the road, the precipi- 
tous mountains rose hundreds of feet overhead, while 
gigantic icicles hung pendant from the overhanging 
rocks, like huge stalactites, and, glittering in the bril- 
liant rays of the cold winter sun, looked like the sus- 
pended spears of giants. On entering Fayetteville, the 
Third Regiment passed the bivouac of the Third Louis- 
iana, our old comrades on the field of Oak Hills, who 
now welcomed us with extravagant demonstrations of 
joy. Between these two regiments there was an affec- 
tionate spirit of comraderie, from the battle of Oak Hills 
unto the last. Brigaded together during the Iuka and 
Corinth campaigns, the bonds of friendship became more 
earnest and binding with daily association. The intre- 
pid regiment, in the veins of many of whose members 
the best blood of Louisiana coursed, constituted a por- 
tion of the ill-fated garrison of Vicksburg, and occupy- 
ing a bastion during the siege that was blown up, its 
ranks were literally decimated, and but few of the intre- 
pid and generous Frenchmen lived to return home and 
recount the proud story of their heroic career. The 
author is grateful that he has been allowed to offer even 
this inadequate tribute to their worth. 

Great was the contrast between our entry into Fayette- 



ville, now, and eight months before. Then, the people 
had faith in the puissance of the Confederate soldiers, 
and they hailed the flag of Dixie as the harbinger of 
protection. Now, since defeats had destroyed the pres- 
tige of Southern arms, they looked upon our advent 
with apathy, seeming to think that the hand of fate was 
upon them, and that no earthly prowess could avert the 
blow. Like the French, our people grew despondent 
with reverses. They did not remember the high old Ro- 
man way: While the legions of Hannibal were en- 
camped before the city, the very ground occupied by 
them was put up for sale to the highest bidder, as a 
means of obtaining funds for the prosecution of the war, 
and brought fabulous prices. But the despondency of 
the good people of Fayetteville, in the present instance, 
was not without foundation, for the Missouri army was 
in retreat, and McCulloch's infantry yet remained in po- 
sition on the Van Buren road, in the Boston mountains. 
Halting in the town, we had the opportunity of ' 'review- 
ing'' the Missouri army as it defiled past us en route for 
the new position in the mountains. General Price, as- 
suredly, had the most multitudinous and variegated 
wagon-train ever concentrated on the continent, Every 
species of wheel vehicle, from the jolting old ox- cart to 
the most fantastically-painted stage-coach, rolled along 
the road. The men were well clad, and presented a 
fine, soldierly appearance. Starting out, originally, as 
militia, the Missouri army had an entirely disproportion- 
ate number of Brigadier- Generals, and the facetious 
boys cried out, "Here's your army of Brigadier- Gener- 
als and stage-coaches!" The cavalry were assigned to 
the duty of picketing in front of the enemy, and various 

skirmishes, of but little interest, took place. Finally, 

the cavalry was withdrawn, and the enemy's cavalry 

occupied the town of Fayetteville for a week or two, and 

then fell back on Bentonville, at which place, also, was 

the division of Siegel. General Curtis, with the main 


portion of the army, occupied a very strong position, 
near Elk Horn tavern. 

The Confederate forces, in the Boston mountains, oc- 
cupied the. main road leading from Van Buren to Fay- 
etteville. The Missouri army took up position on the 
"Cane Hill" road. The two armies remained substanti- 
ally in this position until Major- General Earl Van Dorn 
assumed command of both Price's and McCulloch's di- 
visions, about March 1st, 1862. And thus a period was 
put to the unseemly wrangling as to precedence, that 
had formally characterized the intercourse of Price and 
McCulloch with each other, and which, at times, very 
seriously impaired the efficiency of both armies. About 
this time, two expeditions were started to the enemy's 
rear, with the object of destroying whatever material of 
war access could be had to. Companies G and I, of the 
Third Regiment commanded by Major Iy. S. Ross, of 
the Sixth Regiment, composed one of the detachments, 
and Company F, of the Third, was ordered to report to 
Major Whitfield, which, with his battalion, constituted 
the other. Major Ross was ordered to ride around the 
enemy's left wing, and Major Whitfield around the 
right. Ross succeeded in reaching the rear of the main 
force, and, at Keitsville, captured a number of prison- 
ers, horses and mules, and burned an immense train, 
containing a vast amount of military stores, and brought 
off his men in safety, with no loss. Major Ross won 
the highest compliments from the commanding General, 
for his dashing gallantry and skillful conduct through- 
out the affair. The skill and sagacity displayed in this 
raid, by Major Ross, gave token of that splendid career 
which the near future had in store for him. 

Major Whitfield was not so successful, as his horses 
were too jaded to perform the long and rapid march 
necessary in affairs of this nature. On the 28th of 
February, General Van Dorn arrived, and assumed 
command of the combined Missouri and Confederate 
forces, and immediately preparations for an advance 


were then made. The army took up the line of march on 
the 2nd of March. The weather was bitterly cold, but 
such spirit had the new commander infused into the 
hearts of the men, by his energetic actions, that the 
signal to advance was hailed with enthusiastic shouts, 
and other demonstrations of joy. Gen. Van Dorn ac- 
companied Price's column, while General McCullough 
had command of the infantry portion of his late army. 
General Mcintosh, who had recently received his com- 
mission of Brigadier- General, commanded the cavalry. 
During the advance, the Sixth Regiment captured a 
commissary train and fifty prisoners. The march pro- 
ceeded without incident, until the morning of the 5th. 
The weather continued cold, and snow had been falling 
for a day or two, and the earth was covered by the 
cold, white carpet, to the depth of three of four inches. 
Price's division had made a detour to the right, for the 
purpose of turning the enemy's left flank, and gaining 
his rear — a move that was crowned with success. Mc- 
Cullough advanced upon the main road to Elk Horn 
tavern. Mcintosh, on the left, headed for Bentonville. 
From the highlands, two miles south of the town, we 
could see Siegel's infantry retreating. Quick as 
thought, we obliqued to the left, and passed around the 
town, having for an object the cutting off of Siegel's di- 
vision. But the cunning old fox, calculating exactly 
where we would enter the road again, placed his divis- 
ion, 10,000 strong, in ambush, and the first intimation 
we had of the position of affairs, was the firing upon 
our advance-guard, Company B, Third Regiment, Cap- 
tain Cumby commanding. The Third Regiment was in 
the advance, and the men apprehensive of no danger. 
Many were walking, leading their horses, to get warm 
by the exercise. Bang! bang! went the guns, fired at 
Cumby's company, and, quick as thought, Mcintosh 
drew his saber and ordered the bugle to sound the 
charge. It may be imagined that the regiment was 
thrown into great disorder. Yet the impetuous young 


general led the assault, sword in hand, up to the very 
muzzles of Siegel's guns. A deafening roar of artillery, 
and rattling of musketry, greeted the charging column, 
and minnie-balls, grape and canister chorused through 
the air. The regiment was repulsed! Had such a thing 
been whispered before as possible, every man in the regi- 
ment would have denounced him as a calumniator, who 
mouthed the suspicion. The intrepid Mcintosh, amid a 
shower of balls, grasped the flag, and, waving it above 
his head, implored the men to rally for another charge. 
But brave, simple-hearted old Captain Hale stood up in 
his stirrups, the tears trickling down his snow-white 
beard, and exclaimed: "This here regiment are dis- 
graced forever f I'd a rather died right thar than to a 
give arry a inch!" Brave old Captain Hale! He was 
a diamond in the rough, and his men regarded him 
more in the light of a kind father than that of an officer, 
and when the time came for the election of officers, after 
the first year's service had expired, his "boys" begged 
him to remain with them as their Captain. We were 
serving, then, as infantry, and the feeble old hero in- 
formed them that he could not make one day's march 
afoot. Whereupon, the "boys" held a consultation, 
and it was determined upon that they would purchase 
their beloved old Captain a horse and buggy ! Did ever 
man govern before with such unanimous and full con- 
sent of the governed? The loss of the regiment in this 
affair was ten men killed and twenty wounded. The 
command camped at "Camp Stephens" the night of the 
5th. The snow fell all night. The command was in 
motion two hours before day, and all felt assured that a 
few hours would usher in the first act of the drama. 
En route to the field of battle, we passed the Indian 
Brigade of General Pike, all of whom were painted, in 
conformity to the horrid custom of their people. Soon 
the thunders of Price's guns announced that the "Old 
Guard" were in position, in the enemy's rear, and Gen. 
McCulloch at once advanced a brigade of infantry, 


composed of the Third Louisiana and several regiments 
of Arkansas troops, against the Federal left. As Mcin- 
tosh, at the head of several cavalry regiments, came on 
the field, marching by fours, in the following order: 
Third Texas on the right; Sixth Texas on the right cen- 
ter; Ninth Texas on the left center; and Brooks' bat- 
talion on the left, through an open field, in parallel 
lines, by hours, a Federal battery, supported by a bri- 
gade of infantry, opened upon us at a distance of about 
500 yards. General Ben McCulloch was just passing 
the Third Regiment, with a Confederate battery, and, 
as the first Yankee shell went crashing through our 
ranks, commanded, "Wheel that battery into line!" — 
probably the last order ever uttered by this true and 
staunch son of Texas. The gallant Mcintosh ordered 
the bugle to sound the charge, and, waving his saber 
overhead, led the furious and irresistible charge. Like 
the impetuous rush of an avalanche, the mad columns 
swept over the field, in the midst of a tempest of iron 
hail, the thunders of artillery, the yells of the combat- 
ants, and the groans of the dying and wounded. They 
are upon the enemy ! and the iron dogs of war are 
hushed. The combatants become intermixed, and the 
gunners are cut down at their posts. The Stars and 
Stripes go down, and the Red Cross of the South waves 
in triumph above the scene of destruction. But the 
work of slaughter does not stop here. The infuriated 
cavaliers charge the supporting infantry, in the teeth of 
a most destructive storm of musketry, and, routed, they 
fly from the field ! The Third Regiment did not engage 
in the brilliant affair, as it remained to support the Con- 
federate battery before alluded to. By this time, Mc- 
Culloch's infantry were warmly engaged with the enemy, 
about eight hundred yards in front of Pea Ridge, and 
the interminable volleys of musketry told how hotly con- 
tested was the fight. The Third Regiment was dis- 
mounted, and placed in line of battle just behind the 
crest of Pea Ridge, as a support to the infantry, and 


with orders not to abandon the Ridge under any circum- 
stances. Gen. McCulloch, very early in the action, im- 
prudently ventured too far in front of his own lines, 
to reconnoiter the enemy's position, and this was the last 
ever seen of the brave and conscientious old Texas chief. 
The impetuous Mcintosh, who was at home only amidst 
the raging of wild elements, and who courted the mis- 
sions of danger with a fondness not surpassed by the 
affection of a lover for his mistress, led an Arkansas 
regiment of infantry against the enemy, soon after his 
dashing cavalry charge, and fell at the very muzzles of 
their guns, sword in hand. The author regrets exceed- 
ingly that he has no data upon which to predicate any 
sketch of the life of this daring young Georgian. He 
was the soul of honor and chivalry; the beau sabreur of 
the Western army; and, had he lived, would have writ- 
ten his name high upon the memorial roll of Fame. 
With Mcintosh, there was no intermediate rest between 
death and glory. To add to the misfortunes of the Con- 
federate forces, on this ill-starred field, Colonel Hebert, 
of the Third Louisiana, who, after Mcintosh, was the 
next ranking officer in McCulloch's division, was taken 
prisoner. It was evident, from the firing, that the 
brave old Missourian was slowly driving the main force 
of the enemy before his indomitable "Grizzly Bears," 
and the unbroken succession of the volleys from cannon 
and rifles, which sounded like one continuous roll of 
thunder, proclaimed the deadly nature of the conflict. 
And had McCulloch and Mcintosh lived ; had Hebert 
been spared us; or had Colonel Greer known that the 
carnival of death and misfortune had devolved the com- 
mand upon himself ; the enemy before us, too, would 
have been driven back upon a common center, where 
but the alternative of surrender or destruction awaited 
the Federal army. As it was, these brave Louisianians 
and Arkansians, without a head, manfully breasted the 
terrific storm of shot and canister poured into their 
ranks by an enemy who outnumbered them in the ratio 


of five to one, throughout the entire day, and yielded 
never one foot of ground. The continued absence of 
generals McCulloch and Mcintosh excited the suspi- 
cions of Colonel Greer that all was not right, and he dis- 
patched private John N. Coleman, of Company A, 
Third Regiment, to go in quest of the Generals, and as- 
certain if no further disposition of the reserve was to be 
made, for that experienced officer well knew that the 
brave and weary Louisianians and Arkansians in our 
front should be re-enforced or relieved by a fresh divis- 
ion entirely. 

Mr Coleman soon returned, saying that he could as- 
certain nothing in regard to the whereabouts of either 
Generals McCulloch or Mcintosh, but that he had seen 
the Adjutant- General of each, neither of whom could 
give any account of their chieftains. Mr. Coleman, 
however, stated that he had met Lieutenant- Colonel 
Lane, who had been detached from his regiment, and 
placed in command of another cavalry corps ; that Lane 
wished Greer to meet him at a log- house, immediately 
in rear of his brigade, where they could hold a consulta- 
tion, and arrive at some determination as to what course 
should be pursued in the strange and anomalous state 
of affairs. Thither Colonel Greer repaired, without the 
loss of any precious time. It was decided by these of- 
ficers, to withdraw the troops to the main road, about 
one-half mile in rear of our present position, and dis- 
patch a courier to General Van Dorn, announcing the 
critical condition in which this wing of the army was 
placed. At 11 p.m., with no guard but the friendly 
darkness, Mr. John N. Coleman set out on his hazard- 
ous mission, in the prosecution of which it was neces- 
sary tD describe the semi- circumference of the circle of 
which the enemy's center was the pivot, and pass his 
flank, all the while exposed to imminent danger of being 
captured by the cavalry covering that wing of the army. 
Coleman arrived at General Van Dorn's head-quarters 
at one o'clock, with the dispatches, which imparted the 


first intelligence to the General that all was not right 
with McCulloch's division. General Van Dorn instructed 
his Assistant Adjutant- General, Major Dabney H. 
Maury, to write Colonel Greer an order, directing him to 
withdraw the entire division, and lead it around the 
enemy's right flank, to the position occupied by the 
Missouri division. Coleman, with a sagacity superior 
to that of his chief, refused to bear the order, in writing, 
for, if he was captured, and unable to destroy the paper, 
the enemy would come into possession of the fact that 
calamity had occurred to that division, and at once in- 
augurate measures to prevent the desired concentra- 
tion, when General Van Dorn consented that it should 
be transmitted verbally. Coleman returned about 2 
a. m., and Colonel Greer at once undertook the hazard- 
ous task of complying with the directions of General 
Van Dorn. Mr. Coleman, for the eminent services ren- 
dered on this occasion, was recommended by Colonel 
Greer for promotion, and was, accordingly, commis- 
sioned Regimental Commissary of Subsistence, with the 
rank of Captain. Subsequently, on the formation of the 
Texas Brigade, he was named Commissary for the Brig- 
ade, with the rank of Major. He deserved the highest 
meed of praise for the cool courage, devotion to the 
cause, and penetrating sagacity manifested on this oc- 
casion. Major Coleman had the misfortune to lose both 
his feet, a few years ago, by a railway accident. He 
resides in the city of Marshall, Harrison county, Texas, 
respected by all his neighbors, and beloved by his com- 
rades of the old Brigade. The division reached the 
head-quarters of Gen. Van Dorn about daylight, and, 
after a few sporadic charges on the enemy, and some 
desultory firing, apparently without spirit or object, the 
" Army of the West," which had never before turned its 
back to the foe, sullenly retired from the scene, leaving 
the defeated enemy in possession of the field. Van 
Dorn was urgently pressed by General Beauregard, the 
Department Commander, to re- enforce him at Corinth, 


Mississippi, with all his available force, for almost sim- 
ultaneously with the battle of Elk Horn, the terrible 
tragedy of Shiloh had been enacted, and General Beau- 
regard was now confronted by an overwhelming force, 
commanded by Major- General Halleck. Van Dorn 
acted with haste, but so consummate had been all his 
preparations, that had it not been for the death of Mc- 
Culloch and Mcintosh, the battle of Elk Horn would 
have been one of the most crushing defeats to the ene- 
my known in modern times; for, surrounded as he was, 
defeat meant capitulation or destruction. Even had he 
organized a continued and vigorous attack by the com- 
bined divisions, the evening of March 8th, 1862, would 
have ushered into history a splendid Confederate victo- 
ry. The soldiers, every one of whom felt that the beaten 
enemy was not entitled to the possession of the field 
of battle, and its necessary sequence — the meed of vic- 
tory — quitted the contest with reluctance, feeling that 
they had been defrauded of their well-earned dues, and 
many were the anxious glances turned to the rear by 
the retreating army, in the vain hope that the enemy 
would attempt a pursuit. But nothing was more dis- 
tant from the intentions of General Curtis and his Lieu- 
tenants. They had had sufficient work, and were con- 
tent to let "good enough alone." "By the gods!" ex- 
claimed "Colonel" H. McBride Pridgen, a private of 
Whitfield's battalion, in describing the battle to friends 
at home, "we whipped them! we butchered them! we 
exterminated them! and I don't believe there was but 
one man that escaped to tell the tale, and he stole my 
blankets!" Upon this statement of the gallant "Colo- 
nel" Pridgen, hangs a tale." 

Whitfield's battalion had been dismounted, in order 
that it could participate in the battle as infantry, which 
it did, and, as the Third Regiment was marching to the 
battle-field, on the morning of the 6th, "Colonel" Prid- 
gen, who, foot-sore and weary, had sat down by the 
roadside, enveloped in a huge, gray, double blanket, in 


one corner of which was worked, in scarlet worsted, "H. 
Mc Bride Pridgen." Being acquainted with nearly every 
man in Company A, he desired some one to allow him to 
ride behind him to the battle-field. Robert R. Wright 
invited the fatigued man to mount behind him, which he 
did, and rejoined his command on the battle -field. In 
the heat of the action, his huge blankets became too 
cumbersome, and he laid them on the ground, but the line 
being forced back by the enemy, the "Colonel's" blank- 
ets were not recovered. He gave them up for lost, and, at 
the dreary bivouac fire, often afterwards spoke in touch- 
ing terms of his friendly blankets. Time wore on, and 
Van Dorn's command was transferred to Mississippi, and 
had the honor of whipping the corps d'armee of "Head- 
Quarters-in -the- Saddle" Pope, at the battle of Farm- 
ington, capturing his camp and all its contents. After 
the battle, the boys engaged, to a moderate extent, in 
pillaging his deserted stores. Imagine my surprise, 
when the redoubtable "Colonel" Pridgen rushed up, 
holding a large, double, gray blanket in his hands, in 
the cornor of which still shone the legend in crimson 
letters: "H. McBride Pridgen!" "By the gods!" he 
exclaimed, "I have found the blankets I lost at Elk 
Horn, Arkansas." This was a strange concidence, but 
the circumstance is true. 

The bodies of the slain generals were recovered from 
the field by members of their respective staffs. It is be- 
lieved that the body of the lamented young Georgian 
was buried in Van Buren, Arkansas, and that of Gener- 
al McCulloch, conveyed to Texas, by Colonel Brown, his 
oid friend, and a member of his staff. General Ben. Mc- 
Culloch came to Texas, at a very early day, and fought 
at the battle of San Jacinto. He was a celebrated In- 
dian fighter, and, among other creditable affairs with the 
savage foe, defeated the daring band of Comanches that 
burned Linnville, in the battle of Plum Creek, in the 
year 1840. Subsequently, he engaged in the Mexican 
war, as commandant of a guerrilla battalion, that per- 


formed many eminent services during the war. As a 
citizen Ben. McCulloch had the respect and confidence 
of all who knew him. He filled several public positions 
of trust, and acquitted himself, in the discharge of his 
duties, with as much credit to the probity of his charac- 
ter as to his business capacity. He was among the first 
appointments of Mr. Davis, receiving the commission of 
Brigadier- General, and was assigned to the command of 
the Arkansas District — a command involving, probably, 
more vexatious questions for solution than any other in 
the Confederate States. To say that General McCul- 
loch acquitted himself with credit in his administration 
of the affairs of his district, and that he retained the 
confidence of his government to the last, is eulogium 
sufficient to satisfy his most exacting friend. General 
McCulloch was very abstemious in his appetites, and in- 
dulged in none of the small vices. The character of 
none of the sons of Texas could more properly be chosen 
as an exemplar for the youth of the land. Ben. McCul- 
loch was dear to all true Texans. May the grass grow 
green above his soldier-mound! 


Chapter XXVI. 


The soldierly conduct of Private Polk Dye, of Com- 
pany F, Third Texas Cavalry, in the battle of Elk Horn, 
deserves mention. Having lost his horse, he joined 
temporarily a company of the Third Louisiana Infantry, 
and stood the brunt of battle with that noble regiment 
all day. In the last of many charges made by the regi- 
ment, his arm was broken by a minnie-bullet. He was 
assisted to his own regiment by his comrades of the day, 
who paid him high compliments for his coolness and 

As our wagon -train had been odered back to the Ar- 
kansas river, when Colonel Greer made the move to re- 
join General Van Dorn, the command without rations, 
and the men presented the most gloomy and dejected 
appearance possible to conceive. By some unaccounta- 
ble oversight, the entire park of artillery belonging to 
McCulloch's late division, in withdrawing from the field, 
were suffered to take a road leading to the north. Just 
as we had bivouaced, after the third day's march, hun- 
gry, gloomy, and dispirited, orders came for the Third 
Regiment to saddle up and return in quest of the artillery, 
which had been heard from, and to escort it to the army. 
Mechanically the men obeyed, and were soon retracing 
their march in gloomy silence. In the morning we met 
Captain Good, having in charge his own and other bat- 
teries. Instead of losing our own artillery, as many 


feared was the case, we ascertained that we had brought 
off one more piece than we had carried on the field. Fi- 
nally, after many days' wrestling with the "grim and 
unrelenting enemy," hunger, we reached our winter- 
quarters, where the wagon -train awaited us, with an 
abundance of rations. Replenishing the inner man, we 
hurriedly resumed the march for Little Rock, and from 
thence to Duvall's Bluff, at which place, to our utter as- 
tonishment, we were ordered to be dismounted, our 
horses sent to Texas, and the men embarked on a steam- 
boat and transported to Memphis, Tenn., en route to 
Corinth, Miss. Notwithstanding the fact that we re- 
garded this order as a breach of faith, totally at variance 
with our contract, yet the men being impressed with a 
correct idea of the critical condition in which recent re- 
verses had placed the Confederacy, yielded their own 
inclinations, with patriotic zeal and devotion to the 
cause, and complied. The Third Regiment embarked 
on board the steamboat "Scotland," and soon were 
steaming down White river. The stream was flooded to 
overflowing, as was the "old fathers of waters." After 
a trip without incident, the regiment arrived at Memphis, 
and encamped in the suburbs of the city for several 
days. Finally, we departed by train for Corinth, and 
soon reached that disease-infected point. Here Gener- 
al Beauregard was in command of an army variously 
estimated at from 35,000 to 75,000 men. We opine the 
former figures came nearest the truth, 

Without memoranda or data of any nature of the other 
regiments that subsequently composed the brigade, a 
narrative of whose services we are purposing now to 
commit to paper, can not be followed through all their 
individual movements, as can that one of which the 
author was a member; and if, seemingly, more promi- 
nence is given the Third than to the others, the author 
would beg his comrades to assign the effect to the cause 
just stated. He would not detract one iota from the 
well-earned fame of any. To him the Legion — Ninth, 


TllE GREAT WAR. 183 

Sixth, and Third — are one, and he only wished he could 
be invested with the means of according even-handed 
justice to all, as assuredly he has the will to do so. At 
Corinth, the Third Regiment was placed in a newly -or- 
ganized brigade, over which was placed Brigadier- Gen- 
eral Hogg. General Hogg was a Texas gentleman of 
many commendable social and domestic qualities, and 
was a veteran of the Mexican war, having served as a 
private in Wood's regiment. General Hogg soon fell a 
victim to the brooding malaria of that plague-infected 

Colonel Louis Hebert, of the Third Louisiana, though 
a prisoner in the hands of the enemy, was promoted 
Brigadier- General, and to this brigade the Third Texas 
Regiment was transferred. The brigade, in the absence 
of General Hebert, was commanded by Colonel J. W. 
Whitfield, of the First Texas Legion. This brigade did 
not participate in any of the actual fighting at the bat- 
tle of Farmington, in which the vain -glorious Pope was 
driven back, in disgrace, by one division of Van Dorn's 
corps d'arniee, and his camp captured, though it did an 
unpleasant amount of marching, with the object of cut- 
ting Pope off from the ford of Hatchie creek. But that 
doughty warrior was too fast for us, as we arrived just 
in time to witness the crossing of his rear-guard. Thus, 
time passed in drilling, skirmishing, and physicing, — 
for fully one-half of the men were prostrated by camp 
dysentery — until May 8, 1862, which day had been de- 
signated as the time for the re- organization of the regi- 
ment, by the election of field and company officers : 
Captain Robert H. Cumby, of Company B, was elected 
Colonel; Captain H. P. Mabry, of Company G, Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel; and Captain Barker, Major. Dr. Zeb. 
Shaw was appointed Surgeon; J. N. Coleman, Captain 
and Commissary; E. P. Hill, Quartermaster; O. N. Hol- 
lingsworth, Adjutant, and Wm. H. Gee, Sergeant-Major. 

A. B, Stone. Captain Co. A; Giles S. Boggess, Cap- 
tain Co. B; James Jones, Captain Co. C; R. S. Dab- 


ney, Captain Co. D; Preston B. Ward, Captain Co. E. 
R. F. Dunn, Captain Co. F; S. C. Noble, Captain Co. 

G; J. W. Lee, Captain Co. H; Green, Captain Co. 

I; Sid. S. Johnston, Captain Co. K. 

As both Colonel Cumby and Lieutenant-Colonel Ma- 
bry were in bad health, and unable to assume the com- 
mand, Major Barker requested Colonel Lane to retain 
command of the regiment awhile longer, to which re- 
quest Colonel Lane consented. 

During this campaign, the enemy advanced his lines 
slowly and with the greatest caution ; for he had been 
made to feel the steel of his less numerous opponent on 
the sanguinary field of Shiloh, and to respect his prow- 
ess. Disease was the insidious and fatal enemy that 
the Southern army had to yield to, finally. Day by 
day, the ranks of the men on duty grew thinner and 
thinner. The hospitals were crowded, and thousands 
were sent to asylums far in the rear. The evacuation 
was voluntary, on the part of General Beauregard, and 
dictated by the soundest policy. The movement was 
affected in the face of the enemy, without confusion or 
the loss of a cartridge. Preparatory to this retrograde 
move, the trains were so caxed, in the removal of sup- 
plies and munitions of war, that many of the sick could 
not obtain transportation, and these poor unfortunates 
were the 10,000 prisoners alleged to have been captured 
by Major- General "Head-quarters-in-the-Saddle" 
Pope, over which he crowed so lustily in the papers of 
the North, and for which he was considered the hero 
to instruct the Army of the Potomac in the ways to vic- 
tory — with what success, the reader knows who has pe- 
rused an account of his passage at arms with brave old 
"Stonewall" Jackson, at second Manassas. 

Previous to the retreat, there transpired many acts of 
daring and intrepidity on the part of Southern com- 
mands in the innumerable skirmishes, and affairs of 
outposts, that daily occurred. In one of several, the 
cool courage and soldierly bearing of the Third was so 




marked as to call from the commanding General a com- 
plimentary notice that was read on parade to the entire 
army. On June 29th, heavy skirmishing was going on 
in our immediate front, and the regiment was ordered 
out to support the skirmishers. On the advanced 
skirmish line the command was drawn up in line of bat- 
tle, and an advance ordered by Lieutenant-Colonel 
Lane, who, on the right, led the men in person, while 
the brave and young Major Barker, performed a simi- 
lar duty on the left. The firing increased in volume as 
the regiment advanced, until Colonel Lane ordered the 
charge, which was responded to by deafening yells on 
the part of the men. A deadly volley of musketry was 
poured into the line of yelling, charging Texans, who, 
with bayonets fixed, rushed, with the impetuosity of a 
tornado, over all obstructions, and, though numbering 
but 256 rifles, drove the 11th Ohio and 18th Missouri 
infantry regiments, numbering full 1,000 men, in con- 
fusion and dismay, from the field. The regiment sus- 
tained a loss of thirty killed and fifty-five wounded. 
Among the former was the brave young Major Barker, 
whose high soldierly bearing on this and former occa- 
sions, won the admiration of all. The contest was 
warm, short, and decisive, as thirty minutes would 
have covered the whole time of the entire action. 

The author can not refrain from reproducing, in this 
connection, a vivid description of this gallant action, 
from the pen of Judge Hogg, who was a member of the 
Third Texas Regiment: 

"On the morning preceding the evacuation of Corinth 
by the Confederates under Beauregard, in May, 1862, 
we made a considerable demonstration on the front of 
our lines, in order to hoodwink the enemy, while the 
material and main bulk of the troops were withdrawn. 
Among the forces ordered out was the Third Texas 
Cavalry, dismounted, under command of Colonel W. P. 
Lane. About sunrise on the 28th of May, the regiment 
was ordered to "double-quick" to re- enforce the skirm- 


ishers, who were being: heavily pressed by a force of the 
enemy of vast numerical superiority. After passing 
through an immense abatis and over a formidable 
chevaux defrise, we came up with our advanced skirm- 
ishers, and in full view of the enemy's position, which 
was in a valley about three hundred yards distant, cov- 
ered by a jungle of black-jack underbrush that com- 
pletely veiled them from our view, while our position af- 
forded no cover except large oaks, and we were denied 
their protection when it interfered with our alignment. 
As soon as we were discovered by the enemy, a galling 
fire was opened upon our line, and from the volumes of 
smoke that boiled up from the copse, and the deafening 
roar of the musketry, we were apprised of the fact that 
the encounter would be stubborn and deadly. The bat- 
tle opened in earnest, now, and the firing bceame ter- 
rific. There were only 246 of our regiment well enough 
to participate in the engagement, and, owing to the en- 
emy's heavy overbalance of numbers, and their more 
advantageous position, it behooved every man to avail 
himself of whatever protection the timber afforded. 
Each man took his tree, and, after discharging his fire- 
lock and re-loading in that position, would advance to 
the next cover and repeat the performance. Colonel W. 
P. Lane, Major James A. J. Barker, and Adjutant Or- 
lando Hollingsworth were the only mounted officers on 
the field, and, thus exposed, were excellent targets for 
the enemy's sharpshooters. We advanced but a short 
distance in the aforesaid manner, when Lane's favorite 
command, "Charge!" was given," to dislodge 
the enemy from his stronghold. At the spell- 
word, "charge," each Texan quit his cover, 
and dashed with wonted impetuosity upon the 
opposing ranks. The forest resounded with their 
dreadful shout, which sent a chill of terror to the hearts 
of the invaders. In full run, the Texans, with the fu?y 
of madmen, close on the lurking enemy whose skill and 
power are spent in vain to check them. Over three 


thousand rifles are belching forth their death -fraught 
charges into the slim line of the brave 246 — still they 
come! Their wake is covered with the best blood of the 
nation — yet on they rush! They reach the fire-breath- 
ing thicket, and, without a halt, they plunge into its 
thorny bosom, when, in one chaotic stampede, the gal- 
lant brigade of Indianians, that Uncle Sam had en- 
trusted with honor's post, made their shameful exeunt, 
leaving about forty of their dead and a like number of 
their wounded on the field. The flying enemy was pur- 
sued until the sound of the "long roll" in the main 
camp, warned the impetuous Lane that prudence coun- 
seled a halt. Of the boys from Cherokee, we found the 
brave young Abner Harris dead; Wallace Caldwell — 
the beloved, the noble Wallace — languishing under a 
mortal wound, and John Lambert severely wounded. 

"Many were lamented on that day, but none more 
than that prince of nature's nobleman, the talented and 
chivalric Major James A. J. Barker, the pride of his 
regiment. He fell while gallantly cheering his men on 
to victory, as he had done on many a well-fought field. 
His gallantry and general superiority was the theme of 
every tongue that knew him. His name was insepara- 
bly connected with our ideas of valor, magnanimity, 
truth, candor, and fidelity. 

"The Major had a presentiment of evil, and so in- 
formed his intimate friends on the morning of the bat- 
tle. -The dying hero fell into the arms of John Myres 
and Lem. Reed, who bore his inanimate form from the 
field of his death and his glory." 

The author made many attempts to obtain a copy of 
the complimentary address issued to the army, by Gen. 
Beauregard, on this occasion, but regrets that all his 
efforts were unavailing. If such a copy is extant, he 
hopes to be able to procure it, should a second edition of 
this work be demanded. 


Chapter XXVII. 

General Beauregard executed the movement of retir- 
ing from Corinth in a masterly manner. Captain S. S. 
Johnston, Company K, of the Third, was on picket duty 
at the time of withdrawal, and, in the hurry of the mo- 
ment, Colonel Lane neglected to relieve them. The 
army had proceeded some miles when the absence of 
gallant old Company K, was remarked. The courier 
who bore captain Johnston the order to "fall back," 
found him, with his twenty -five Texans, boldly confront- 
ing Halleck's 100,000. Texas had many brave and dar- 
ing sons to be proud of, but not one more deservedly so 
than Captain Sid. S. Johnston — now the modest, unas- 
suming citizen of Tyler, Texas. 

General Halleck seemed satisfied with the occupation 
of Corinth, and halted his victorious legions at that 

The Confederate army retired to Tupelo, on the Mo- 
bill and Ohio railroad. The greater portion was soon 
transferred, under General Bragg, to Tennessee. One 
corps (Varmee remained at Tupelo, composed of the 
divisions of Generals Maury and Little, the whole com- 
manded by Major- General Sterling Price. For several 
months, the corps remained here, with no incident to 
break the dull monotony save the daily "guard mount- 
ing'' and drill. About the time General Bragg com- 
menced his advance into Kentucky, the camp was re- 
moved up the railroad to Saltillo, about fifteen miles 
north of Tupelo. From this point General Price made a 
rapid march on Iuka, where General Rosecranz was 
posted with about 10,000 men — General Grant being at 


Corinth, fifteen miles above, with as many more. So 
complete was the surprise, that General Rosecranz evac- 
uated the town without removing or destroying any of 
his immense stores collected there. Consequently, the 
Confederates reveled on "Yankee" rations during their 
short-lived possession of the place. Price's position 
was an extremely hazardous one here, and not a night 
passed but an alarm was sounded. Our cavalry was ex- 
tremely inefficient, and the enemy was expected on 
either of three fronts. When the crisis came, after a 
week of anxious watch, the army was drawn up in line 
of battle on the Corinth road, about three miles from 
Iuka, awaiting the enemy, who, it was reported, was 
advancing on that road. When suddenly, a breathless 
courier dashed up to General Price with the astounding 
information that the enemy was advancing on Iuka from 
the south side, and that nothing interposed between him 
and the town save a company of cavalry, who could of- 
fer him no opposition. Hebert's Brigade, composed of 
the First Texas Legion, Third Texas Cavalry (dis- 
mounted), Third Louisiana Infantry, and Fortieth Mis- 
sissippi Infantry — the whole commanded by General 
Louis Hebert — was ordered to "double quick" to the 
threatened point. Arriving, the Third Texas was de- 
ployed as skirmishers, and drove the Federal sharp- 
shooters back on the reserve. The brigade was now 
formed in line of battle, and King's (Confederate) bat- 
tery dpened fire. This was immediately responded to 
by the enemy's artillery; at the same time, the firing of 
small arms became general, and, as the opposing lines 
were not exceeding three hundred yards apart, consid- 
erable execution was done. As Generals Price and Lit- 
tle were conferring, just in the rear of the Third Texas, 
the latter received a rifle -ball in the forehead and fell 
from his horse into the arms of Sergeant T. J. Cellum, 
of Company A, Third Texas, dead. General Price dis- 
mounted and hastened to the side of the fallen general, 
whose spirit, alas, had already flown. To Cellum, the 


old hero said, with moistened eyes and husky voice : 
"Bear his body from the field, my sons; and remain with 
it, yourself, until I can join you." That night, when 
the storm of battle had lulled, the form of General Little 
was consigned to a hastily -dug grave, "by the light of 
the lanterns dimly burning.' ' 

A forward movement was now ordered, and as the 
brigade marched with slow and solemn tread down a 
slight declivity in the direction of the enemy, a little dog 
was observed trotting along in advance of the line, ap- 
parently oblivious to the thunders of artillery, the rattle 
of rifles, and the whizzing of missiles that literally filled 
the air. The fate of the brave little rebel dog was never 
known. Arriving at the base of the declivity, the com- 
mand "double-quick," was given. The enemy now re- 
doubled his exertions. Nine pieces of artillery were 
brought to bear, and the threatened point re- enforced. 
"Charge!" was the next command uttered by brave lit- 
tle Creole Hebert, and the Confederates, yelling like de- 
mons reveling in a saturnalia of death, pushed forward 
at the top of their speed. They are met, full in the face, 
by the iron contents of the nine cannon, and, like a tree 
torn by the hurricane, waver for a moment. "On, men, 
on!" shouts the impetuous Frenchman, and the Con- 
federates distinctly hear the command of the enemy : 
"Double charge of grape and canister!" They know 
what the result will be if the cannon are not taken be- 
fore they can be again fired. Their comrades lie around 
them dead and dying. Of five colonels, not one re- 
mains. Death is abroad in his fury ; but to retreat is 
more dangerous than to advance! The men hesitate 
but a moment, and raising again the demoniac yell, dash 
madly forward and reach the guns just as the double 
load is being driven home. In vain did the infantry 
support attempt to come to the rescue of the guns — their 
charges on the Confederate line were as impotent as the 
beating of the waves on the sides of Gibraltar. The 
Confederate loss was simply terrible. In the Legion 


and Third Texas, one -third of the men were killed or 
wounded. Their loss was greater from the fact that 
their position was immediately in front of the death- 
dealing artillery. 

Where all displayed such heroism, it would seem in- 
vidious to make distinctions; but the author cannot re- 
frain from mentioning the name of brave young Lieuten- 
ant Dan. H. Alley, of Company G, Third Texas, whom 
he witnessed, in the hottest period of the charge, sword 
in hand, calling to his men, "Come on, boys!" 

Col. H. P. Mabry, commanding Third Texas, received 
a severe wound that fractured an ankle; Colonel J. W. 
Whitfield was wounded severely in the shoulder; Col. 
Gillam, of the Third Louisiana, received a half-dozen 
wounds, that incapacitated him for active service. 
Captain Odell, Brigade Commissary, was killed. 

The author feels excusable in mentioning the death of 
his friend, John Sherrod, who was killed at his side — a 
grape- shot passing entirely through the body. 

Night put an end to the carnage. General Price be- 
came convinced that General Grant had re- enforced 
General Rosencranz, and that his retreat would be cut 
off, resolved to anticipate events, and about 9 p. m., 
commenced a retrograde movement in the direction of 
Baldwin, Mississippi. The enemy did not attempt a 
pursuit, as he was satisfied with the test of metal at 
Iuka. All the wounded, unable to march, fell into the 
hands of the enemy. But, at this period, the humane 
system of paroling prisoners was in operation, and it 
was not until some months later that both sides dis- 
graced the American name, and libelled humanity, in 
their inhuman treatment of prisoners. 

A characteristic anecdote is told of Colonel Mabry, 
who fell into the enemy's hands. The printed parole 
offered him to sign, read "the so-called Confederate 
States," etc. The punctilious officer refused to attach 
his name to the instrument, alleging that the Confeder- 
acy was an established fact; and as Colonel Mabry was 


about as firm in his convictions as old Oato of Rome, he 
was given a parole in which the obnoxious words did not 
occur. And all Confederate soldiers will remember that 
their paroles, at the general surrender, read "Confeder- 
ate States,'' etc. — a phraseology of respect accorded to 
the punctilious honor and manly firmness of Colonel H. 
P. Mabry, of Texas. 

An incident in regard to General Hebert: As the 
Third Texas was being thrown forward as skirmishers — 
the enemy still advancing and firing — an officer of the 
regiment asked of the General, who was superintending 
the movement, "General, must we fix bayonets?" "Yes, 
sir!" shouted the impatient officer; "What for you have 
ze bayonet, if you no fix him? Yes by gar; fix him! fix 

At Baldwin, General Price was met by Generel Earl 
Van Dorn, who had advanced from Vicksburg with 
about 5,000 men — General Price's force was about twice 
as many. With this force, General Van Dorn, who now 
assumed the command, commenced a rapid advance on 
, Corinth — probably the strongest fortified place in the 
South — occupied by General Rosencranz and 30,000 men. 
The fatiguing march was attended by no incident until 
the morning of the first day's fight, when, just at day- 
break, three distinct shocks of an earthquake were felt, 
and constructed by many as of ominous import. 

It is not the province of the author, in this connection, 
to give the details of operation unconnected with the im- 
mediate operations of the four regiments that composed 
Ross' Brigade; and as that brigade had not yet been 
organized, difficulty is experienced in correctly drawing 
the line. Suffice it to say, the four regiments partici- 
pated in this fatal battle, and bore themselves, as they 
always did, with soldierly daring and bravery. They 
charged the outer line of breastworks, over abatis of fal- 
len timber; they scaled the works through bristling rows 
of ckevaux defrise, and silenced the seige guns on the 
ramparts by capture. During the night of the first day's 



fight, the Confederate army was drawn up in line of 
battle, Price occupying the center, and bivouaced on 
their arms. The signal for attack the next morning was 
a discharge of ten pieces of artillery by Price. As 
agreed upon, the ten cannon were discharged simul- 
taneously, just at daybreak, and the army rose to its 
feet as one man. A desperate charge was immediately 
made upon the inner lines, which were also taken in 
many places, though at a fearful cost of life. All know 
how short-lived was this ephemeral success. It is 
enough to recount the catastrophe, without attempting 
to designate the cause. The charging columns were not 
supported as they should have been, and were, conse- 
quently, driven from the town, to which they had pene- 
trated in the frenzy of the charge, and back across the 
breastworks, which they had purchased at such a fear- 
ful cost, only to lose again. That some one was culpa- 
ble, is not to be disputed; but to designate the individ- 
ual is the province of the general historian, and not the 
author of this circumscribed narrative. 

A disorderly retreat was now commenced, with the 
enemy in close pursuit. Villepigue's Brigade, only, of 
the whole army, preserved sufficient discipline to inter- 
pose any impediment in the way of the triumphant 

In advancing on Corinth, General Van Dorn had left 
the wagon -trains at the bridge on the Hatchie river; 
and the Texas Legion, consisting of about 500 efficient 
men, together with other detachments, numbering pos- 
sibly 500 more, constituted the guard left to preserve 
the sole means of retreat, and secure the train from cap- 
ture. And now, to add to the gravity of the situation, 
General Hulburt and Ord came down from Grand Junc- 
tion with a corps about 10,000 fresh men, rendered en- 
thusiastic by the news of the victory, and gained posses- 
sion of the brigade, after an obstinate contest with the 
guard; in which action the "Old Legion" bore itself 


with conspicuous gallantry, and suffered heavily in kil- 
led, wounded, and prisoners. 

Previous to the capture of the bridge, however, Colo- 
nel L. S. Ross, in command of a brigade numbering not 
more than 700 rifles for duty, were thrown across the 
stream to support the Confederate guard, commanded 
by Brigadier- General Moore, who was overwhelmed by 
numbers, and his heterogeneous force almost disorgan- 
ized, ere the arrival of Ross. Moore urged Ross to re- 
tire behind the stream, and pointed out the futility of his 
sustaining an attack from the advancing enemy, who 
numbered near 10,000 fresh men. Colonel Ross main- 
tained his position, however, until his superior in rank, 
General Maury, ordered a retreat. To extricate his 
brigade from the hazardous position it now occupied, 
demanded prudence, skill, and courage, and that Colo- 
nel Ross effected this delicate maneuver, in the face of 
overwhelming numbers of troops flushed with victory, 
speaks volumes in his praise. 

The triumphant enemy now held the bridge, and noth- 
ing intervened between him and the Confederate wagon - 
train but Ross and his little brigade, who maintained 
their position with a heroism not excelled by either side 
during the whole course of the war. Finally, General 
Maury brought up the brigades of Generals Phifer and 
Cabell, and this force kept the enemy at bay, during 
a brief crisis in the history of the Army of the West, 
that momentarily threatened a disastrous catastrophe. 
The routed and disorganized columns of Van Dorn and 
Price, closely pursued by Rosencranz, were now arriv- 
ing upon the scene in a state of demoralization that 
made "confusion worse confounded. " In the rear of 
this straggling mass, the gallant Villepigue, at the head 
of his brigade, was offering such opposition to Rosen- 
cranz as his paucity of numbers would justify. But 
neither Villepigue nor Maury could hope to maintain 
their positions, against such fearful odds, long. 

It appeared that the "Army of the West" was con* 


fronting its fate at last on the banks of this turbid and 
impassable stream. Events had reached a crisis, and 
disaster seemed imminent. Generals Van Dorn and 
Price hold a hurried interview. The head of the column 
is turned to the left of the road, and the forlorn retreat 
is resumed down the river. A mounted detachment is 
hastened down the stream to a point some ten miles dis- 
tant, where the remains of an ancient mill-dam are said 
to exist. Upon this foundation, the " pioneers' ' hastily 
improvise a bridge ere the head of the column appears. 
Over this providential bridge the army passes, and frees 
itself from the enveloping folds of the enemy. A sigh 
of relief escapes ten thousand hearts when they realize 
their escape from the very jaws of destruction. Strange 
to relate, not a wagon was lost, not a gun — though so 
demoralized was the army that, had the enemy main- 
tained a vigorous pursuit, the consequence must have 
proved fatal to the Confederates. General Rosencranz, 
with the humanity characteristic of the brave, caused 
the Confederate dead, upon the fields of Corinth and 
Hatchie, to be properly interred. The brave Colonel 
Rodgers, of the Second Texas Infantry, who fell, sword 
in hand, upon the death- swept ramparts, the foremost 
man in one of the deadliest assaults of modern times, 
was acoorded a soldier's burial, with all the honors of 
war, by his admiring enemies. Such acts as this, half 
redeems the depravity of man, and partially beguiles 
the horrors of war. The beaten army retired to Holly 
Springs; where, however, it was not suffered long to re- 
main, as General Grant, who has been rather appropri- 
ately styled the "Modern Sphynx," placed his legions 
in motion, with the city of Vicksburg as the objective 

It was evident to the most obtuse, & that the fortunes of 
the Confederacy in that quarter were desperate, and 
that, unless something extraordinary was attempted, 
Vicksburg must become the prey of the Federals. The 
defeated army contained, in its own ranks, the medium 


through which its deliverance was to be obtained. 
Three thousand five hundred cavalrymen were destined 
to achieve this result — an exploit unsurpassed in the 
annals of war, and which revolutionized the art of war 
in America, at least, by assigning the cavalry -arm to a 
position of importance it had never before occupied. 

For his defeat at Corinth, Major -General Earl Van 
Dorn was superseded in the command of the "Army of 
the West" by Lieutenant- General J. C. Pemberton. 



No more the bugle's ringing blast, 

Now sounds "to horse!" throughout the camp; 
No more the charger, dashing fast, 

In gore his quiv'ring fetlocks tramp; 
No more the "Red Cross" proudly waves 

Defiance to the haughty foe ; 
No more the crimson battle waves 

Of human blood, now ebb and flow. 


No more as when the "cool Old Chief,"* 

His life gave up in sacrifice, 
Does glory lead the path to grief, 

Where tears and sobs may not suffice; 
No more as when the "dashing boy,"t 

. A stranger, came to do and dare, 
Is life exchanged for fames's alloy, 

Like empty bubbles, light as air. 

" III. 

Still we recall those scenes with pride, 
And mark each incident, though light; 

The bivouac, the cheerless ride, 
The skirmish, and the deadly fight. 

"*Cool Old Chief"— General Ben. McCulloch. 

1"The Dashing Boy"— General Mcintosh killed at Elk 




First in the front of each advance, 

Last in the rear of each retreat; 
The Cossack Ranger's ready lance, 

Was ever poised the foe to meet. 


And when the "modern Sphynx" arrayed — 

With will to match against the fates — 
His legions which had ne'er essayed 

In vain the storm of city gates, 
Delay'd proud Vicksburg, was thy doom, 

By spectral men on noiseless wings, 
Who lit, with lurid, glare, the gloom, 

That hung a pall o'er Holly Springs. 


A pandemonium, Spring Hill heard, 

When Whitfield led, through shot and shell, 
The "Legion," "Sixth," the "Ninth," and "3rd," 

And triumphed o'er a mimic hell. 
With Yazoo glories, bursts enlarge, 

As recompense for all our loss, 
Where fortune in the dashing charge, 

Conferr'd the "wreath and stars"* on Ross. 


Around the lines of Corinth, where 

Disease, an ally of the foe, 
Rode on the pestilential air, 

And claimed its dues of death and woe; 
And 'round Atlanta's ditches red, 

Where Valor failed to cope with Might, 
We left at rest our priceless dead, 

Athwart the field from left to right. 


No marble shaft may point the way, 

No epitaph the tombs disclose, 
Where death's still line, in grim array, 

Unheeded find their last repose. 

"Wreath and stars" — insignia of a general officer. 


But far beyond, the phantom line 

In silence hold9 the dim parade, 
Where radiant suns forever shine, 

" Across the river in the shade." 

Note. — Among the bravest and best that ever shoul- 
dered a musket for the cause of Dixie, was the author's 
friend, comrade, and confident, Alonzo P. Hope, of 
Company A, Third Regiment, who, although wounded 
in the hip at Corinth, continued at his post, rejecting all 
tenders of a discharge from the service until the end. 
Mr. Hope now resides near Marshall, Texas, upon his 
farm, respected by all who know him. 


Chapter XXVIII . 

While encamped at Tupelo, the following orders were 
issued, relative to the remounting of the Texas Brigade : 

6 'Head -Quarters, District of the Tennessee, 
''Tupelo, Mississippi, August 23rd, 1862. 

"Special Orders, No. 19 — Extract. 

"Brigadier- General Little will detail two commis- 
sioned officers and three men of the Third Texas Caval- 
ry (dismounted), Colonel Mabry commanding, to bring 
from beyond the Mississippi river, the horses belonging 
to that regiment. 

"James M. Loughborough, A. A. G." 

. "First Division, District of the Tennessee, 

"Head- Quarters, Post at Saltillo, Mississippi, 

August, 1862, 

"Special Order, No. 16. 

"Captain J. N. Coleman, A. C. S.; First Lieutenant 
Logan, Company K; Sergeant-Major W. H. Gee, pri- 
vate Robert I. Haywood, Company G, and private 
J. D. Davis, Company E, are hereby detailed 
to bring from beyond the Mississippi river the 

horses and men belonging to the Third Texas Cavalry. 

"W. C. Shamburg, A. A. G.'V 

"Head -Quarters, Third Texas Cavalry, 
amp near Saltillo, Mississippi, August 23rd, 1862. 
"Special Order, No. 1. 

"The men belonging to this command, who were de- 


tailed under Order No. — , issued by Major- General 
Van Dorn, Des Arc, Arkansas, April 1862, to carry the 
horses belonging to this command to Texas, are re- 
quired to report to Captain John N. Coleman, at Mar- 
shall, Texas, for duty. 

"H. P. MABRY, 

"Colonel, Commanding Third Texas. 
"Captain Coleman will receive recruits for the various 
companies as follows : 

"Company A, Captain A. B. Stone, five men. 
"Company B, Captain J. W. Wynne, five men. 
"Company C, Captain J. A. Jones, twenty men. 
"Co. D, Captain R. S. Dabney, twenty- two men. 
"Company E, Captain P, B. Ward, fourteen men. 
"Company F, Captain R. F. Dunn, nine men. 
"Company G, Captain E. S. Noble, ten men." 

At Lumkin's Mills, another brief halt was obtained, 
and while here the Texans, who were brigaded together 
at Holly Springs, learned of the arrival of the anxious- 
ly-expected horses. Alexander Selkirk nailed not with 
greater joy the first glimpse of the white sails that were 
to bear him from solitude, than did these men hail the 
arrival of their horses. It was announced that the 
horses were but a few miles distant. Orders arrived to 
prepare for another retreat; retreat had become a word 
nauseous, and the men were actually ashamed to re^ 
treat further. Brigades, divisions, corps passed 
the Texan camp. They had concluded, after consulta- 
tion, not to march without their horses. When the 
drums beat to "fall in," the sound was absolutely 
drowned by the deafening cries, "horses!" "horses!" 
General Whitfield, the brigade commander, made them 
an appeal to duty, but the boys knew that "Old Whit" 
wished them mounted, and, at all events, that he "was 
with them" in any thing snort of desertion. General 
Maury now appeared, and appealed to the men to pro- 


ceed. Their sole reply was "horses!" "horses!" In 
despair the General turned away, and rode to overtake 
his retreating division. 

Colonel Griffith, who was, at the time, in command of 
the Sixth Texas regiment, had his regiment called into 
line, and, after a calm review of the military situation, 
he showed how necessary it was for the maintenance of 
discipline, how infectious and fatal insubordination 
would prove, and appealed to the men not to tarnish 
their own honor, and place a bar sinister upon the es- 
cutcheon of Texas. He promised them that they should 
be mounted soon, and without the loss of honor, and 
concluded by inviting all who were disposed to remain 
at the post of duty, to return to their camp and prepare 
for the march. All responded but one solitary individ- 
ual. To him, Griffith said: "Go, sir, and obey orders, 
or I will run you through with my saber!" 

The effect of Griffith's appeal had the influence neces- 
sary to lead all the other regiments into the performance 
of duty, and saved them the lasting disgrace that such 
mutinous conduct, if persisted in, was sure to attach to 
their names. Heretofore, he had led them to victory 
over their enemies;. he had, in this instance, led them to 
triumph over their baser passions; and the moralist 
would not hesitate to say that the latter was the mosi 
splendid victory of the two. Happily, the old brigade 
was never afterwards pervaded by so mean a spirit. 

Similar orders to the foregoing were issued in regard 
to the other regiments of the Texas Brigade; but, like 
much other data referring to this work, was inaccessible 
to the author. This is regretted, and was sought to be 
obviated, by every effort that promised the slightest suc- 
cess, but only to be met with defeat. 

Footworn and weary, the defeated army took up the 
line of retreat from Holly Springs, for what point they 
knew not, for it was but too apparent that General Grant 
could drive the Army of West Tennessee into the Gulf if 
he so wished. Never did the Confederate Cross trail in 

202 Recollections of 1 

the dust as at this time. The army was demoralized by 
the crushing defeat at Corinth ; a defeat that burst upon 
them like a cyclone from a cloudless sky, in the very 
moment of victory. General Price took up the line of 
march from Abbeville to Grenada, as soon as it was evi- 
dent that General Grant intended another advance. 
General Van Dorn had already made Oxford his head- 
quarters. Just before Price evacuated Abbeville, Colo- 
nel Griffith, in command of the Texas brigade, occupied 
the left wing, which rested on the Tallahatchie, near 
Toby Tuby ferry. This energetic and restless officer 
kept a vigilant watch on the enemy's movements, and, 
discovering a detached column of some five hundred 
cavalry, on the extreme right of the Federal position, 
asked and obtained permission of General Van Dorn to 
attack them. Returning to his command, Griffith caused 
forty rounds of ammunition to be issued to each man, 
and, after completing other necessary arrangements, 
was in the act of crossing the river, when orders arrived 
from General Van Dorn, countermanding the previous 
one, and directing Colonel Griffith to proceed down the 
Tallahatchie, via Panola, cross the Tokona, and thus 
placed himself in the rear of General Washburne, who, 
at the head of an unknown force, was threatening Gre- 
nada, with a view of intecepting General Price's retreat. 
General Van Dorn's directions were for Griffith to har- 
rass Washburne, by unexpected attacks upon his rear, 
and thus retard his movements, until General Paice 
could bring off his large wagon-train, wounded, artil- 
lery, etc. With his usaul energy, Griffith made the neces- 
sary dispositions for the care of his wagon train, and, 
within an hour, was ready to set out upon this unex- 
pected expedition. The Brigade consisted of the Le- 
gion, Third and Sixth Texas Cavalry, and Captain Mc- 
Nally's battery of four guns. After a foreed march to 
the Tokona, it was discovered that all the fords were 
strongly guarded, and that it would be impossible to 
penetrate the enemy's rear. In this dilemma, Griffith 


boldly determined to throw his little brigade in Wash- 
burn's immediate front, and risk the safety of Price's 
retreat upon the issue. The odds were terrible, but he 
argued that if his brigade was cut to pieces, that the 
salvation of the army would have been purchased 
cheaply enough — a disinterested decision, worthy a 
hero. In pursuance of this resolution, he proceeded up 
the Tokona, and hastily communicated this decision to 
General Van Dorn, who immediately replied, in the fol- 
lowing brief dispatch, which, however, gave Colonel 
Griffith full authority to act as he should elect : 

' * He ad - Quarters , 

"Department of Mississippi and East Louisiana, 

"Oxford, Mississippi, December 1st, 1862. 

"Colonel Griffith: I am directed by the General 
commanding, to say, that if you carry out what you 
propose, it will be what he desires. He has no in- 
structions to give. The army has now fallen back, and 
will be tonight on the Tokona. 

"I am, respectfully, 

"R. W. MEMMINGER, A. A. G." 

But the readiness of Griffith to assume grave responsi- 
bilities, when he deemed that the interest of the cause 
was to be subserved thereby, as exemplified in his 
charge, contrary to orders, at Chustenahlah, now as- 
serted itself, and he was deep into the practical execu- 
tion already of his project to strike Washburne in front, 
when the above dispatch reached him. The Tokona 
was passed, and the head of the column was nearing 
the enemy, in the neighborhood of Oakland. From a 
few stragglers from the enemy's ranks, it was learned 
that General Washburne was in command of eight or 
ten thousand infantry, and about two thousand cavalry. 
Griffith's brigade numbered not more than twelve hun- 
dred effective men. It was a bold stroke, conceived by 
the daring Texan, but demanded by the exigencies of 


the occasion. In consequence of the rapidity of the 
march, the battery was left in the care of a number of 
the men whose horses were too jaded to proceed. On 
the night of the second, learning that the enemy's 
cavalry were occupying Preston, the irrepressible rang- 
er dashed into that place, but only to discover that the 
"blue-coats" had retired to Mitchell's Cross Roads, on 
hearing of the arrival of the Confederate cavalry at 

On the morning of the third, learning that Wash- 
burne, at the head of his whole force, was moving on 
the town of Oakland, Griffith immediately determined to 
meet him at the junction of the road he was marching 
upon with the Charleston road, and a half mile beyond 
town. Colonel Boggess, of the Third, was directed to 
make a demonstration on his left and rear; Captain 
Jack Wharton, commanding the Sixth, took position on 
the Charleston road; Colonel Hawkins, commanding the 
Legion, together with Major J. H. Broocks, temporarily 
commanding three detached companies, constituted the 
center. Major Broocks, being in the advance, speedi- 
ly opened the engagement by a vigorous attack, which 
was met by the enemy with a spirited return. Colonel 
E. R. Hawkins dismounted his men under the cover of a 
slight natural elevation, and moved up in excellent or- 
der on the right of Broocks.* The battle was now gen- 
eral, and the gallant Hawkins, and the veteran Legion, 
maintained their position against a force outnumbering 
them in the ratio of ten to one. The artillery of the 
enemy literally poured into their devoted ranks grape 
and canister with a rapidity and precision of aim rarely 
exceeded, Griffith, true to the boldness of his original 

*At the battle of Oakland, Sergeant Cellum, of the 
Third Texas, at the head of thirty men, penetrated the 
enemy's rear, and captured several wagons loaded with 
commissary supplies, killing several of the guard, and 
making some twenty prisoners. 


conception, ordered a charge upon the battery, and the 
brave fellows, responding with a yell of triumph, irre- 
sistibly charged in the wake of their gallant leaders, 
and took the murder- dealing guns; and, without a mo- 
ment to reform their disordered line, attacked, and 
drove from the field, the infantry that was supporting 
the battery. The enemy now T planted another battery 
en their right, and opened a cross-fire upon the Legion. 
Colonel Griffith ordered Captain Wharton to dismount 
his men, and take the battery. The brave Wharton was 
eagerly complying with this order, when intelligence 
reached Colonel Griffith that the enemy was outflanking 
his left. The Texans were immediately summoned to 
horse, as the safety of the command demanded a speedy 
withdrawal from the enfolding lines of the enemy's su- 
perior numbers. This delicate maneuver was per- 
formed, under fire, in perfect order, and line of battle 
reformed in the suburbs of Oakland. The spirited en- 
gagement had continued fifty minutes, and the loss on 
the side of the enemy was considerable. The Texans 
lost ten men. General Washburne did not wish another 
repetition of the dose, and, with the friendly coyer of 
the night, retired to the cross-roads. 

This engagement, small in itself, was of vital conse- 
quence to the army of Price, in that it drove from its 
rear an army of 12,000 Federals. General Washburne 
evidently imagined that he was confronted by a division 
of Van Dorn's army, for had he known the inconsidera- 
ble number of his assailants, it is not probable that he 
would have turned his back to them. The boldness and 
spirit of Griffith's attack was sufficient data upon which 
to predicate such a hypothesis. Of course, during the 
presence of Washburne' s force in the rear of General 
Price, the trains on the railroad had ceased to run. 
Colonel Griffith immediately forwarded to General Price 
some fifteen trains, with which to facilitate his retreat. 
Thanks to the boldness of the victors at Oakland, the 
brave old Missourian was enabled to save all his stores, 


and reached Grenada, on the south of the Yallabusha 
river, in due course. 

The distracted and suffering army of West Tennessee 
was now allowed a respite from the alarms of battle; 
but how long it would continue, no one presumed to 
know; all feared that the victorious Grant would soon 
push onward. General Van Dorn was, at this time, su- 
perseded in the command of the army by Lieutenant- 
General J. C. Pemberton. Of the organization of a 
cavalry corps, to be commanded by General Van Dorn, 
and the conception of the Holly Springs expedition, 
vide " Biography of General Griffith," in this volume. 

The army of General Pemberton, numbering about 
25,000 illy-disciplined, poorly- clothed and fed men, oc- 
cupied the town and vicinity of Grenada. General U. 
S. Grant was in command of 75,000 disciplined, and 
thoroughly supplied and equipped men, accustomed to 
victory, and occupied the town of Coffeeville. Memphis 
was General Grant's base of operations, and Holly 
Springs an intermediate depot, where had been accum- 
lated immense stores of supplies and munitions of war. 
This latter placed was garrisoned by about 2,500 men. 
In compliance with orders from General Pemberton, 
Oolonel Griffith reported to General Van Dorn for duty, 
with his brigade, on December, 12, 1862, composed and 
officered as follows : 

Ninth Texas Cavalry — Colonel D. W. Jones com- 

Third Texas Cavalry — Lieutenant -Colonel J. S. 
Boggess, commanding. 

Sixth Texas Cavalry — Captain Jack Wharton, 

First Texas Legion Cavalry — Major J. H. 
Broocks, commanding. 

In addition to the Texas Brigade, General Van Dorn's 
command comprised the brigade of General W. H. 
Jackson, composed of Tennessee and Mississippi caval- 


ry, and the Missouri Brigade of Colonel McCulloch, the 
whole aggregating about 3,500 men. The object and 
purposes of the expedition were enveloped in absolute 
secrecy, and Van Dorn set out from Grenada, it is be- 
lieved, on the night of December 19, and pursued the 
hasty march all night and the next day. 

Passing through the beautiful town of Pontotoc, the 
hungry troopers were enthusiastically welcomed by the 
noble and patriotic citizens at the place; and trays, 
dishes, and baskets of the choicest edibles were offered 
on all sides, and pitchers of wine and milk as well. 
No halt was allowed, and the men pursued their myster- 
ious way munching the welcomed "grub" dispensed by 
the fair hands of Pontotoc's good, and beautiful, 
and noble heroines. O, peerless ladies of Pontotoc, 
though the mists of twenty years becloud the 
mind's eye, and interminable leagues intevene 
between us, the courtly Griffith, and his sur- 
viving "rebels," salute you! You who were radiant 
maidens, then, and had, perchance, plighted your vows 
with those of a soldier lover, are matrons now. Time 
despoils the cheek of its damask, but the heart, like old 
wine, grows the better from the effects of age. May 
your clime continue to produce a type of womanhood as 
noble and exalted as your own; for emulation will find, 
at the standard of your excellence, an ultima thule be- 
yond which there can be no progression ! 

General Van Dorn had dispatched a trusty spy, well 
acquainted with the place, to Holly Springs, to ascer- 
tain the number and position of the enemy, and to ac- 
curately locate the picket on the Ripley road. The 
command proceeded at a brisk pace, in a northerly di- 
rection, and crossed the Holly Springs road three miles 
north of the Ripley road. Here the Federal scouts, 
hitherto hanging on the Confederate rear, returned to 
their camp, satisfied that having passed Holly Springs 
so far to the left, that the object of the rebel raid was to 
be found in Tennessee. The command halted at 3 p. 


m., on the 21st, and the men regaled themselves on 
broiled pork and luscious sweet potatoes. 

General Van Dorn summoned Colonel Griffith to his 
presence, and imparted to him the plan of the purposed 
attack. The spy returned with accurate data as to all 
necessary information, and further stated that the Yan- 
kees, apprehending no danger, were preparing for a 
grand ball. The command was disposed of as follows : 
Jackson's Brigade on the right, Griffith's the center, 
and McCulloch's the left. At nightfall, Van Dorn 
counter-marched, and proceeded back to the Ripley and 
Holly Springs road, and thence to Holly Springs, mov- 
ing by columns of fours, and guns uncapped. Silently, 
Jackson leads his brigade to the right, and McCulloch 
his to the left, and the meshes of fate are encircling the 
unconscious Federals. 

Guards had been left at all the houses in the immedi- 
ate vicinity of the line of march, and other precautions 
taken to prevent the possibility of the intelligence of 
Van Dorn's return passing into the city. Slowly and 
cautiously, the command moves along through the 
darkness, like some monster serpent, conscious of its 
ability to seize and crush its prey. Lieutenant Hyams, 
of General Van Dorn's staff, was dispatched on the deli- 
cate mission to capture the picket, without the discharge 
of a gun, for one pistol-shot would apprise the slumber- 
ing Federals of the presence of their enemy. That the 
mission of this young officer was an entire success, 
speaks volumes in praise of his bravery, coolness, and 
sagacity. The enterprise contained the elements of 
ninty-nine failures to one of success. General Van 
Dorn directed Colonel Griffith to charge at the head of 
the Sixth and Ninth into the town. "And take care, ,, 
added the General, "that you do not find a hornet's 
nest at the square!" With drawn saber, Griffith places 
himself at the head of the charging column. "For- 
word, at a gallop !" he commands, and the squadrons 
move down the road; and, ar the suburbs are reached, 


the bugle's shrill, harsh blast sounds the oharge upon 
the crisp morning air, and shouting, yelling rebels dis- 
turb the slumbers of Federal soldiers and citizens, 
alike. The former emerge from their tents to be in- 
formed that they are prisoners of war; and the latter 
— mostly women and children — to shout: "Hurrah for 
Van Dorn ! Hurrah for the Confederacy ! ! Hurrah for 
Jeff Davis! ! !" Little children bring forth miniature 
Confederate flags that they have been forced to conceal 
since the "Yankees" came; beautiful young ladies 
wave their handkerchiefs, and matrons implore the pro- 
tection of God for the charging soldiers. Tears of joy 
gush forth from many an eye, and manly voices grow 
husky from emotion. O, that entry into Holly Springs 
was the incident of a life-time! 

Colonel Griffith posted the Third, under Colonel Bog- 
gess, in the square, and detailed the Legion, at the in- 
stance of General Van Dorn, to guard the prisoners. 
Colonel Broocks faithfully performed this duty, as in- 
deed he always did, and kept his men well in hand, and 
none of the Legion engaged in the subsequent plunder- 
ing of the stores that ensued. Colonel Broocks had 
four men detailed from each company at a time, and, in 
a decent manner, these procured whatever they wished 
of the captured property. This conscientious officer al- 
lowed no prisoner to be robbed of his individual proper- 
ty, and while he thus honored himself and his State, 
he kept the bright escutcheon of the Confederacy un- 
tarnished. A regiment of Iowa troops were seen form- 
ing line just out of town, and Colonel Griffith ordered 
Colonel Jones to form his regiment — the Ninth — so as to 
charge them down the street. A flag of truce was now 
raised in a camp to the left, and Griffith dispatched an 
aid to receive the surrender : in the meantime, placing 
himself by the side of the gallant "boy colonel," Jones, 
they lead the Ninth in a headlong charge against the 
Iowa warriors; disperse them, take their colors, and 
many prisoners. 


Colonel Griffith now dispatched to General Van Dorn : 
"The 'hornet's-nest' is ours!" and joined Colonel Bog- 
gess in the square. Many ladies— some still in dishab- 
ille — throng the square; all rejoicing, all excited, and 
none looking to future consequences. They point out 
to Griffith the house occupied by Mrs. Grant, the pay- 
master, and the chief quartermaster. Colonel Griffith 
sent guards to arrest all the officers domiciled in houses, 
and to the house occupied by Mrs. Grant, at which were 
several of the General's staff. Griffith detailed ten 
men, in the special charge of Colonel Boggess, as a 
guarantee that the ladies should be treated with defer- 
ence and respect. But a few minutes elapsed when a 
messenger from Boggess announced to Colonel Griffith 
that three ladies denied him entrance to the house. 
Griffith, fearing some rudeness might be committed, re- 
paired to the scene immediately, when Colonel Boggess 
exclaimed: "I can not execute your orders without the 
exercise of violence to these ladies!" Mrs. Grant, 
stepping forward, said: "And you, sir, make war upon 
women, do you?" "On the contrary, madam," "replied 
the knightly Griffith, doffing his plumed chapeau, and 
bowing profoundly to the lady ; "we leave that to our 
enemies!" But the ladies continued to "hold the fort," 
and Griffith, addressing the soldiers, said: "Men, offer 
no rudeness to the ladies ; if they will not allow you to 
pass through the gate, tear off a picket from the fence, 
and flank them ; if you are denied admittance at the 
door, go around them, and find ingress through a win- 
dow'. ' You must search the house for "concealed prison- 
ers, but do not touch the hem of the garment of one of 
these ladies." The men commenced tearing off the 
pickets to the right and left of the gate, when Mrs. 
Grant relented, and politely invited them to enter 
through the gate, at the same time protesting that there 
were no men in the house. One officer was found in the 
house. Colonel Griffith placed a guard over the house, 


for the protection of the ladies, while the command re- 
mained in town. 

. McCulloch's Brigade now arrived at the square, and 
some of the men broke into a sutler's store, and commen- 
ced an indiscriminate pillage. Col. Griffith, knowing 
that the infection would become contagious, appealed to 
the men, in the absence of their officers, to desist. His 
appeals to the Missourians were, however, futile; and 
soon Tennesseeans, Mississippians and Texans vied in 
the work of pillage; the latter nationality, however, al- 
ways keeping a sharp look out for their commander. Of 
course, all this was wrong, was destructive of discipline, 
and would have proved fatal in its consequences had a 
few hundred Federal troopers dashed into the town; but 
the poor, ragged, half- starved fellows deserved all they 
got, and more. Never did an army undergo as com- 
plete a transformation in external appearance in so short 
a time. The grimy, ragged rebel of a moment ago, now 
appears with the uniform coat of a Federal colonel on his 
back, a plumed hat on his head, and his feet and legs 
are encased in patent-leather cavalry boots. In vino 
Veritas! at least one would have imagined as much to 
judge from the frequent and liberal potations indulged in 
by, alas! too many. Cigars were plentiful, and about 
three thousand of them were kept puffing at a time. The 
property captured and destroyed was estimated at over 
$5,000,000 worth. Besides the stores that were filled 
with goods of the sutlers and the government, immense 
quantities of bacon, pork, flour in sacks, hard bread, 
coffee, etc., etc., were stacked in piles as high as a man's 
head, and in rows a quarter of a mile long at depot. 
Great quantities of arms and ammunition were found. 
The court-house was the magazine and contained an 
immedse quantity of ordnance stores, bomb- shells, pow- 
der, etc. This was fired as the command left the city, 
and the exploding pieces sounded, at a distance, as if a 
battle was in progress. 
' The dream of John S, Griffith was realized — the blow 


had been struck, and it only remained to be seen what 
effect it would have in causing the great Federal cap- 
tain to change his plans for the reduction of Vlcksburg. 

As the fifth act of the drama, in this connection, does 
not properly pertain to our narrative, it will only be re- 
marked, en passant, that the result was all that had been 
hoped for. General Grant withdrew his forces from that 
front to Memphis, and inaugurated his celebrated move- 
ment down the Mississippi river, directly against Vicks- 
burg, and the Texas Brigade was summoned from the 
mountains of distant Tennessee, to attend the obsequies 
of the Army of West Tennessee, on July 4, 1863. 

The following incidents attracted the attention of the 
another during the brief sojourn of the distinguished 
Southern party at the headquarters of General Grant. 
Our fortunes had undergone such remarkable changes 
in the last few hours, that nothing now could possibly 
surprise us. We had stepped from privation to plenty, 
and many were disposed to inaugurate a jubilee, in- 
spired by the spirit of John Barleycorn, Esq. 
Here comes Pennington, of the 3rd, with $20,000 in crisp 
new greenbacks that he had discovered. He'd dispose of 
the batch for five dollars in silver. Despairing of drink- 
ing all the whiskey, and having engagements elsewhere, 
the rebels knock the heads of the whisky barrels in, and 
the streets of Holly Springs, literally, are flooded with 
whisky. A big, red -headed Irishman, in his shirt- 
sleeves, but wearing a Federal officer's trowsers, called 
Colonel Mulligan — whether derisively or not, quien mbe,? 
— takes advantage of the sudden decline in liquors, and 
drinks confusion to his enemies with the pillaged whisky 
of his friends. "Ye coom like thaves in the dark!" 
cries the melo-dramatic Colonel Mulligan. Is this the 
way to make war on a civilized people ? But ye'll 
nivir, no nivir, escape ! " " Release the prisoners in 
the jail, " is tne next order.^ We find many Federal 
soldiers incarcerated, some of whom join the ranks of 
their liberators. Many citizens imprisoned without the 


shadow of a charge being preferred against them. But, 
shade of Brian Boru ! who have we here else than Mr. 
B. Thomas? O, inimitable son of the Emerald Isle ! My old 
comrade, whose loyal friendship was as true as steel, and 
whose aversion for guard duty was stronger than his 
hatred of the devil, what fate hath befallen thee since 
we parted so long ago under the "Stars and Bars?" 
Mr. Thomas informs us that he is under sentence of 
death as a spy. " And if ye hadn't come, it was shoot- 
ing me they would the day afther the morrow. I'm glad 
to see yez, boys, and glad yez canteens are full." 

4< 0, 1 am not fond of wurruck, 

It was niver the gift of the Bradies, 

Be sure I'd make a most illigant Turruck, 
For I'm fond of tobaccy and ladies!" 

Mr. Thomas did not exaggerate his case a particle. He 
was discharged from the Third Texas after the conclu- 
sion of the first year's service, as being over the age of 
re- enlistment ; whereupon he engaged in the business 

of a sutler to the regiment. In quest of necessaries for 
his shop, Mr. Thomas ventured into the enemy's lines as 

affording a more varied market from which to select his 

purchases, with the result already remarked. 

Colonel Griffith, as elsewhere stated, commanded the 

"Texas Brigade" in this, perhaps, most remarkable 

campaign of the" war, and was second to no officer in the 

corps, in contributing to its unparalleled success. He 

charged at the head of the Texans into the city, and his 

black plume waved in the thickest of the fight at Mid- 

dleburg and Davis' Mill. Cool in the hottest fever of 

battle, he was brave even unto rashness. But happily, 

his temerrity and impetuosity were held in subjection by 

a sagacious intelligence, and prudence characterized all 

his actions. General Griffith is no less a gentleman of 

letters and culture, than of action on the field, and he 

would grace any civil position in the State — that he 

would consent to occupy — with profit to the people and 

honor to the office. His friend, the author, looks for- 


ward to his civil preferment with happy anticipations; 
knowing, full well, that Texas has no truer son upon 
whom she could confer her honors in part compensation 
for the arduous services that he has rendered her, on 
distant fields, which made the Texan name glorious. 

Upon the immediate capture of Holly Springs, an in- 
describable scene of pillage ensued. In some com- 
mands, soldiers no longer recognized their officers, and, 
apparently, all subordination and discipline were lost 
sight of. It was, doubtless, a diverting scene to the 
prisoners, who longed in their hearts to see a few hun- 
dred of their blue- coated comrades come charging into 
town, and route the greedy rebels who were sacking it« 
And, in truth, this would not have been impossible, had 
the evil continued unchecked. But seeing some of his 
own brigade catching the disgraceful infection, Colonel 
Griffith appealed to them to remain at their posts of 
duty, and not disgrace the fair fame of the Confederacy 
by such riotous conduct. But some of the men not 
heeding the soldierly appeal to their noble natures, the 
determined chieftain drew his sword, and, in language 
more forcible than polite, vowed that he would constitute 
himself the custodian of Confederate honor, and drove 
the delinquents, at its point, back into the ranks. 

The Texans bore the brunt of each engagement on 
this expedition. Wherever opposition was encountered, 
the gallant Griffith led his Texans through the revel of 
death, and wherever the conflict deepened most, his 
sable plume, like the oriflamme of Henry of Navarre, 
was seen. To the sterling soldierly qualities of Colo- 
nel John S. Griffith, wa3 the Confederate cause in- 
debted, in no small degree, for this success, which, in 
its results, exceeded those of many of the most stub- 
bornly-contested battles of the war. 

The prisoners captured in Holly Springs numbered 
between 2,800 and 3,000. But of infinitely more value 
than the paroling of these, or the destruction of the vast 
accumulation of supplies, was the rendering of Holly 


Springs a strategic of no further importance in the 
"Great Captain's" campaign against Vicksburg. 

About four o'clock in the afternoon, and as soon as 
the work of paroling the prisoners was accomplished, 
the command resumed the march northward. Nothing 
occurred, worthy of mention, until the fortified position 
of "Davis' Mill" was reached, just beyond the Tennes- 
see line. Here a force of some three or 400 Federals 
were ensconced in a palisade fort, having an im- 
passable stream in its front, across which the assailants 
must move over a foot-bridge, exposed to the fire from 
the fort. A curious contrivance, employed here, was a 
cannon mounted on a hand -car, which, from the facility 
with which it could be shifted from position to position 
caused the Confederates considerable injury and an- 
noyance. The Texas Brigade was dismounted and 
marched to the attack in fine spirits, led by the intrepid 
Griffith. Colonel Griffith ordered Colonel Broocks, 
with the Legion to cross the stream above the bridge on 
some logs, and assail the position in flank. This move-, 
ment the gallant Broocks executed in excellent order, 
and had General Van Dorn not called Griffith from the 
attack in front, to resume the march into Tennessee, 
the place must inevitably have been taken by the Confed- 
erates. The engagement was warm, and the Texans left 
about twenty dead upon the field, and twice that num- 
ber wounded. At the bridge, in going to the attack, 
and in retreating from the field, volley after volley was 
poured into their ranks, wholly exposed to the enemy's 
aim, as they defiled across the narrow causeway, and 
deployed into line on the other side of the stream. The 
engagement continued, without intermission, for about 
three hours, when General Van Dorn, seeing the futility 
of his attacks on the fortified position without guns, 
called off the men. Again must the gauntlet be run at 
the fatal bridge, and again did the vigilant enemy im- 
prove the occasion by. a free use of their rifles. A Con- 
federate hospital was erected on the field, and in charge 


of Assistant- Surgeon Eugene Blocker, of the Third 

Northward, again, the indefatigable Van Dorn led the 
march, and, in the afternoon of the next day, came in 
the neighborhood of Bolivar, Tennessee, at which place 
was a considerable force of the enemy. General Van 
Dorn amused them by a skirmish with the Tennesseeans 
and Mississippians, while the Texans attacked a strongly 
fortified position at Middleburg, a few miles distant. 
One prominent feature of this position was a block- 
house, absolutely impregnable to attacks by small arms. 
The position was stormed again and again, but no foot- 
hold could be gained, and General Van Dorn, despairing 
of success, abandoned the undertaking late in the after- 

The writer omitted to state, in its proper connection, 
that the railroad track was torn up at various points be- 
tween Holly Springs and Bolivar, and the telegraph 
wires cut. The object of the expedition was now at- 
tained, and the column turned to retrace its way by a 
circuitous route. The Federal eavaly were making super- 
human efforts to capture Van Dorn, and endeavoring to 
intercept the column a force of cavalry and mounted 
infantry, not far short of 10,000 men, were employed. 
Frequent skirmishes were had with this force on the re- 
turn, the last of which occurred at Ripley, Mississippi. 

The month of January was passed by the Texas Brig- 
ade in doing picket duty, and in scouting expeditions 
in and about Water Valley. There being no longer any 
immediate need of cavalry in Mississippi, the command 
of General Van Dorn was ordered to Tennessee. Before 
commencing the long and fatiguing march, Van Dorn 
issued his celebrated "Order No. 5," in which he pre- 
scribed the minutest rules for the government of his 
corps, whether in camp or on the march. Proper dis- 
tances were prescribed to be observed on the march be- 
tween companies, regiments, brigades and divisions; 
a regular system of bugle calls was formulated: chal- 


lenges and replies of videttes, etc., etc. — the whole con- 
cluding with the impetuous declaration : "Cavalry knows 
no danger — knows no failure; what it is ordered to do, it 
must do/'* The seemingly interminable march to Ten- 
nessee was wearisome in the extreme, and utterly de- 
void of interesting incident. The army of General 
Bragg was encamped at Tullahoma and Shelbyville. 
His left flank was threatened by a force of about 10,000 
men under General Granger at Franklin. The object of 
Van Dorn was to confront this force, and prevent, if 
possible, its further advance in the direction of Duck 
river. This stream was crossed over a pontoon bridge 
at Columbia, and the column proceeded to Spring Hill, 
on the pike connecting Columbia and Franklin. Sever- 
al skirmishes were had with the enemy in the neighbor- 
hood of Franklin ; when, finally, about March 5, 1863, 
General Granger determined to put a period to Van 
Dorn's annoyances, and, affecting to despise the prow- 
ess of his adversary,, dispatched Colonel Coburn with 
3,000 infantry, a battery of artillery, and about 500 cav- 
alry, to drive the audacious rebel across Duck river. 
Van Dorn met the expeditionary column at Thompson's 
Station, near Spring Hill: and, while engaging him in 
front with the Texas Brigade, dispatched General For- 
est — who had reported to him for duty — to gain the ene- 
my's rear. The Texans made charge after charge, 
upon the line of the enemy, and the author would bear 
witness to the bravery and soldierly bearing of Colonel 
Coburn, who fought with a valor worthy of better issue. 
Outnumbered, surrounded, and being attacked by the 
impetuous charges of the Texans every moment, he fi- 
nally raised the white flag, and surrendered to General 
Van Dorn in front of the Texas Brigade. The prisoners 
surrendered were about 3,000, as the cavalry and artil- 
lery escaped. Again, the author regrets that he is un- 
able to present anything like an accurate estimate of the 
Confederate loss. A comrade of the author, in a late 
letter, says: " I think all the estimates place the loss 


of the Texas Brigade too low. The legion carried . into, 
the battle 225 men, after leaving one-fourth of the whole 
to hold the horses; and, my recollection is, that the 
killed and wounded of the legion numbered seventy- 
five. Company E, came out of the fight with only half 
its number (twenty-eight) unhurt. Those true gentle- 
men and splendid officers, Captain B. H. Norsworthy 
(afterward promoted Major) and Lieutenant Lipscomb 
Norvell, being of the severely wounded. The victory 
was indeed dearly bought by our brigade, no matter 
from what other quarter attempts have been made to 
appropriate the honors of it. With feelings of mingled 
pride and sadness, I continually, in my mind, look back 
upon the scenes of that day, and hear voices that are 
no longer of this world. Captain J. W. Bazer, com- 
manding Company H of the Legion, with kindkess of 
heart, intelligence and iron nerve stamped on his coun- 
tenance, severly wounded, but continuing duty on the 
field until shot dead. 

"Lieutenant Alley, of CDmpany G of the Legion, al- 
ways the gentleman and soldier, in fact and bearing, 
his black plume waving in the thickest of the fight un- 
til mortally wounded. Captain James A, Broocks, com- 
manding Company C of the Legion, with his clear, ring- 
ing voice: " Come on, Company C !" The author would 
bear testimony to the daring and chivalry of Captain 
Broocks, who, upon that occasion, seemed to court the 
mission of danger like a Saladin bearing a charmed 
life. But he was struck down in his ripe manhood. To 
Colonel John H. Broocks, his brother, the dying patriot 
said: " John, take this sword (their venerable father 
had given it to him), and tell father that I died in per- 
formance of my duty." Noble words — example worthy 
the emulation or Southern youth for all time! Lieu- 
tenant C. H. Roberts, Company C of the Legion, true 
and brave, was killed at head of his company. Privates 
Spoon, Elezer Davis and John Bryant of the Legion, 
and Drew Polk and Dayid B. Nicholson of Company E,, 


Third Texas Regiment, always distinguished for sol- 
dierly qualities, were all slain in close propinquity. The 
engagement continued, without intermission, about five 
hours; and, so deadly and stubborn was the nature of « 
the contest, that at times bayonets actually Clashed, and 
hand to hand fights to the death were not uncommon, 
Here fell one of nature's noblemen — Wyndham, E-irst 
Sergeant of Company A, Third Texas. In the morning 
of manhood, he left his Louisiana home, _and came to 
tender his services, and his life, to the cause of the 
South. Pure in his character, of a high and lofty na- 
ture, and talents far above mediocrity, Wyndham was 
justly regarded by his. friends as a young man of great 
promise. Alas, what fond, proud hopes went down 
with him! Hs sleeps all alone, far from the home and 
friends of his youth, without a slab of marble to 
mark the spot; but he lives id the hearts of all who knew 

" For none knew him but to love, 
None named him but to praise. ! " 

If the capture of Holly Springs was the most import- 
ant cavalry exploit of the war, the battle of Thompson's 
Station was not by any means the least. As an effort 
has been made to detract from the hard-earned fame of 
the Texas Brigade on this occasion, the author refers to 
a "defense" published in the Waco Examiner and Pa- 
ron, and which has been endorsed by a number of offi- 
cers of the Texas Brigade as being correct and just in 
all particulars, save that the loss in killed and wounded 
is underestimated. 

Though not exactly in its proper connection, the ori- 
ginal organization of Whitfield's Legion will be given 
here, together with a statement of its participation in 
the battle of Iuka. As this data came anonymously by 
mail, the author does not know to whom his thanks are 
due for the same: 4 ' Whitfield's Legion was organized 
April 2, 1862, by the addition of nine new companies to 
Whitfield's Battalion, the companies of the old battalion^ 


to-wit: A, Captain E. R. Hawkins; B, Captain Murphy; 

C, Captain John H. Broocks; and D, Captain John T. 
Whitfield ; carrying with them into the Legion the same 
letter designations respectively that they had in the 
battalion. Major J. W. Whitfield was elected Colonel 
without opposition. The organization was not complet- 
ed until April 19, when Captain E. R. Hawkins was 
elected Lieutenant-Colonel, and Private S. Holman, 
Major. The command was composed of eleven compa- 
nies from Texas and two from Arkansas, up to, and a 
short time after the reorganization, when the Arkansas 
Company B — Captain W. Catterson — was transferred to 
an Arkansas command. At the * re-organization ' (May 
8, 1862), all the field officers were re-elected, and the 
companies were commanded by the following officers: 
A, Captain J. N. Zackry; B, Captain W. Catterson 
(vice Captain Murphy) ; C, Captain John H. Broocks; 

D. Captain John T, Whitfield; E, Captain B. H. Nors- 
worthy; F, Captain Ben Griffin; G, Captain Ed. O. 

Williams: H, Captain -; I, Captain Jesse M. Cook; 

K, Captain ; L, Captain ; M, Captain O. 

P. Preston; N, Captain . Major Holman resign- 
ed, and Captain John H. Broocks was promoted in his 
stead. On May 9, 1863, Colonel Whitfield was appoint- 
ed Brigadier- General, after which, Lieutenant-Colonel 
Hawkins was promoted Colonel, Major Broocks, Lieut- 
enant Colonel, and Captain John T. Whitfield, Major. 

"On September 19, 1862, the Legion participated in 
the Battle of Iuka. It occupied the position on the 
right of the brigade. When the skirmishers were driven 
back, Colonel Whitfield ordered a charge. The Third 
Texas, which had been thrown forward as skirmishers, 
seeing us advance, fell into ranks with us, and thus 
formed — as one regiment — we captured the Ninth Ohio 
battery, driving the enemy before us. The Forty-sec- 
ond Iowa attempted to make a right-wheel, so as to en- 
filade the line, but three companies, and about seventy 
men of the Third Texas, charged, and drove it in con- 


fusion from the field. In this engagement, the three 
Cook brothers, of the Legion, greatly distinguished 
themselves for cool intrepidity and loyal devotion to the 
flag of the Confederacy. Ensign Ivey Cook was shot 
down, severely wounded, when his brother, Samuel, 
seized the regimental colors, and waved them with a 
cheer of triumph. But he advanced but a few steps, 
when he, too, was shot down ; when a third brother, 
young Andrew Cook, grasped the staff from his relax- 
ing hold, exclaiming: 'The flag shall wave, though the 
entire Cook family is exterminated in the attempt!' 
Colonel Whitfield was severely wounded. The loss of 
the regiment was 107 killed and wounded. On October 
5, 1862, the Legion participated in the engagement at 
Hatchie Bridge, while the battle of Corinth was in 
progress. We were first formed on the north bank of 
the river; were then moved to the south bank, and 
formed in line, with the river in our rear. We were at- 
tacked by an overwhelming force and driven back. 
Our loss was very great in prisoners, as the bridge was 
torn in pieces by the enemy's shell, and the means of 
passing the stream was difficult and dangerous. Our 
loss, during the engagement, Was ninety-seven in killed, 
wounded, and prisoners." 

The author regrets that he does not know to whom he 
is indebted for the above extract; but, knowing the 
general correctness of the statements given, he has no 
hesitation whatever in embodying it in the narrative of 
the services of the Texas Brigade. 



Hancock, the smiling Muse lights on thy name, 
With stylus ready to record thy fame; 
The legend reads upon the tablet traced — 
In letters that may never be effaced. 



In war the superb soldier's matchless blade, 
Gleamed first and last along the lines array'd; 
When Peace arose with crown of olive wreath, 
His tempered steel was first to seek its sheath. 


Though others in the drama bore conspicuous part, 

He won the fortress of his foeman's heart; • 

The civic chief, by all the sections blest, 

Who knew no North, no South, no East, no West! 

Note. — During the march of the 20th, Colonel Griffith 
galloped to the head of the column, and rode with Gen. 
Van Dorn an hour or more. Griffith represented to the 
General that, inasmuch as he was the originator of the 
expedition, he should be granted the post of honor; or, 
in other words, bear the brunt of the fighting; that his 
regiments, having served as infantry, would be more ef- 
ficient than those drilled purely as cavalry. 
General Van Dorn readily acquiesced, and took occa- 
sion to thank the Colonel for having, in such compli- 
mentary terms, suggested himself as the commander. 
He also complimented Colonel Griffith on the conception 
of such a bold ruse de guerre, which promised such 
sterling results to the cause. 

Note. — Upon the entry of the Confederates into Holly 
Springs, Colonel Griffith was informed that General U. 
S. Grant had just departed, on a special train, for Mem- 
phis; and the locomotive that bore the modern Caesar 
and his fortunes, could even then be located by the 
smoke escaping from its chimney. A delay of five min- 
utes, on his part, would have materially checked that 
tide in his affairs, that was bearing him on to fortune 
and fame. 

Note.— At' the instance of Colonel Broocks, their reg- 
imental commander, honorable mention is made of the 
following officers and men of the "Legion," as their due 
for soldierly qualities exhibited on all occasions : 

Lieutenant Thompson Morris, Company I, First 
Texas Legion. 

Captain J. M. Cook, Company I, First Texas Legion. 
T. M. Bagby, Company F, First Texas Legion. 
Lieutenant Snell, Company F, First Texas Legion. 


Sergeant M. McQuistain, Company G, First Texas 

Captain Dave Snodgrass, illegally promoted from 
a lieutenancy in his own company, to the captaincy of 
another, by virtue of General Bragg's autocratic ukase 
of 1862. 

John F. Pleasants, Company C, First Texas Legion. 

Captain Adam Adams, Company E, First Texas 

Captain Ed. O. Williams, Company G, First Texas 

Lieutenant W. B. Walker, Company D, who lost an 
arm in the battles around Atlanta, while at the post of 

Rev. R. W. Thompson, the able and efficient Chap- 
lain of the Legion. 

The author cheerfully adds to these the names of 
Ulysses Hairgrove, Company K, Third Texas Cavalry, 
who was as brave as he was always willing and ready 
for battle. First Sergeant Thomas J. Cellum, Company 
A, Third Texas Cavalry, who was always at his post, 
and ready to take a hand in any thing that might turn 
up. Hays Alston, R. A. Godbold, Fannin Montgomery, 
and Jack Phillips, of the same company and regiment, 
recur to the mind; but, where all were actuated by mo- 
tives the most disinterested and patriotic, it would seem 
inviduous to make distinctions by the special mention of 


Chapter XXIX. 

After the battle of Thompson's Station, the brigade 
encamped near the village of Spring Hill, on the Co- 
lumbia and Franklin pike, for a week or ten days — a re- 
spite from service of which both horses and men stood 
much in need. But General Granger finally moved 
down the pike with an overwhelming force. Van Dorn 
retired in the direction of Columbia, sullenly disputing 
every inch of ground. As the recent heavy rains had 
caused the streams to rise, and more rain threatened, 
General Van Dorn very sagaciously crossed the wagon - 
train and battery of artillery over the river. General 
Granger's force now occupied the position of a horse- 
shoe, extending from the river on the right of Van 
Dorn, to the river on his left. The Confederates were 
enveloped in the folds of the anaconda-like enemy; and, 
to complete the picture of their seemingly wretched 
condition, the pontoon-bridge was swept away, leaving 
a swollen, roaring torrent in their rear. General Van 
Dorn recognized the desperation of the situation, and 
addressed himself at once to redeem it; and, on this oc- 
casion, he unquestionably showed those qualities of 
quick perception, rapid decision, and indomitable pluck, 
that characterizes the captain of genius. An attack, in 
force, was made on the enemy's extreme right, which 
forced him to draw re-enforcements from the left to 
come to the rescue of the threatened wing, thus leaving 
an outlet which the sagacious Van Dorn was not slow 
to improve. Placing himself at the head of the Third 
Texas Cavalry, the General led the way, followed by the 
remainder of the corps. Granger was surprised and cha- 


grined to see his wily adversary elude his grasp, in what 
he, doubtless, deemed the moment of victory. Van 
Dorn took up the line of march for Shelbyville, and, 
crossing the river at that point, returned to Columbia. 
The pontoon was soon repaired, and the corps was, ere 
many days, in front of Franklin, to which post the dis- 
comforted Granger had retraced his steps. The brig- 
ade, while here, was engaged in doing very arduous 
picket duty, and in foraging almost under the guns of 
the enemy. Frequent skirmishes, and partial engage- 
ments, took place; though the redoudtable Granger did 
not again venture out of his stronghold. The Legion, 
while doing picket duty in an advanced and very ex- 
posed position, was surprised one night by the enemy, 
and suffered some loss. 

While encamped here, the assassination of General 
Van Dorn occurred. This was one of the severest 
blows to the Confederacy. Cavalry, pre-eminently, was 
the arm upon which the South should have relied, as by 
rapidity of movement, the deficiency in numbers could 
in a measure, have been obviated. Van Dorn, Stuart 
and Forest, with 10,000 well mounted and well armed 
men, would, undoubtedly, have accomplished great re- 
sults. As we have seen, Van Dorn frustrated Grant's 
army of 75,000 men with barely 3,000 troopers, and the 
results of the capture of Holly Springs was just the 
same as if Pemberton had driven Grant to Memphis; 
and, in a humanitarian sense, much greater, since the 
butchery was avoided. Forest, with 5,000 men, fell 
upon Smith and Grierson, and erushed them, though 
they had full 15,000 men. Had this column joined 
Sherman at Meridian, as doubtless was the intention, 
the Georgia campaign had never been, for Sherman 
would have marched to Mobile, and the end would have 

The circumstances attending the killing of General 
Van Dorn belong to history, and the public have a right 
to demand the whole truth, and, whatever delicacy of 


feeling we may have in regard to invading the sacred 
precincts of the domestic circle, vanish, when circum- 
stances have invited the inexorable stylus of history to 
secure a record in the case; yet the author has no rel- 
ish for such episodes, and is glad that another has 
kindly performed most of the unpleasant duty of 
reciting the causes of the homicide, and so 
relieved from a very uncongenial task. 
There were no witnesses to the unfortunate 
act. The writer was encamped within three hundred 
yards of the house at the time, and can but give the re- 
port as current then. The headquarters of General Van 
Dorn were at the residence of Major Chairs, a few rods 
from the house of Dr. Peters. On the morning of the 
homicide, the General rose from the breakfast table in 
advance of his staff, and proceeded alone to his office, 
where he found Dr. Peters waiting. The latter pre- 
sented a pass to Franklin, to the General for his signa- 
ture. Van Dorn took the paper, sat down to the desk 
to sign it. Peters, standing behind him, awaited the 
final stroke of the pen, when he drew a Smith & Wesson 
revolver and fired, the ball entering the back of the 
head, and lodging just under the surface above the right 
eye. The assassin, licensed by the pass, mounted his 
horse, and a few minutes gallop passed him through the 
enemy's lines. Peters was subsequently apprehended, 
and tried in Mississippi by a Confederate court, and ac- 
quitted. The following account of his arrest, as given 
by Lieutenant Dan. H. Alley, Company G, Third Texas 
Cavalry, will prove of interest ; 

" I was in command of General W. H. Jackson's 
scouts, and, in 1864, with five men, was on a reconnoit- 
ering expedition in Bolivar county, Mississippi. One 
evening we had struck camp — that is to say, we had 
scattered out among the houses of the immediate neigh- 
borhood, two or three in a place, so as not to crowd or 
impose upon the citizens. Walter Boster and another 
man, whom I do not now recall, but think he was John 


Nelson, went to a house about a mile distant, and, in a 
very short time, Boster came back to me, and reported 
that he thought Dr. Peters was at the house where he 
was stopping, but was not sure. I introduced him to re- 
turn, and keep out a strict watch during the night, and 
ascertain, if possible, if the suspected person was 
Peters; and that if he ascertained, beyond doubt, that 
it was Peters, to arrest and hold him. After supper the 
ladies of the family and Dr. Peters were engaged in a 
game of cards. The lady of house was a neice of Peters. 
Accidentally, one of them called his name, so as to leave 
no doubt, on the mind of Boster, as to his identity. 
Shortly after this he laid off his pistols, a pair of Smith & 
Wesson, with one of which he killed the General. Boster 
now arrested him. He made no resistance — probaby be- 
cause they 'had the drop on him 5 . He appeared very 
much incensed at such a procedure, and forthwith dis- 
patched a negro messenger for me, desiring that I 'come 
over* and explain. I sent Boster instructions to guard 
him until morning when I would come over 'and ex- 
plain.' I went over early the next morning. He de- 
manded my authority for causing his arrest, etc. I in- 
formed him that I was a Confederate officer, and that I 
arrested him for the killing of Major- General Earl Van 
Dorn, and that there was a standing order for his arrest. 
He desired to know what disposition I would make of 
him. I informed him that I reported to Brigadier -Gen- 
eral W. H. Jackson, and that he was destined to that 
officer's headquarters. He stated that he knew I was a 
Texan, and that I intended to kill him, as he had learned 
that the Texas Brigade had vowed vengeance against 
him. I assured him that he would be protected so long 
as he conducted himself docilely. He slept none, but 
was engaged in writing the greater part of the night. I 
presumed he was writing his will, as he evidently be- 
lieved we would kill him. On our way to headquarters, 
he talked freely about the affair ; abused his wife, and 
General Van Dorn, but was more bitter against Mrs. 


Peters than the General. He said that he had parted 
with her once before for a similar offense, committed in 
connection with a man other than General Van Dorn. 
He stated that he only condoned her fall from virtue on 
account of his children. He told me that he had caught 
Van Dorn at his house two nights before the killing ; 
that Van Dorn ran out of, and under the house ; that he 
pursued and dragged him forth by the hair of the head, 
Van Dron was intoxicated at the time, and begged for 
his life, which he spared on condition that he would 
visit his house no more, and that he would sign writings 
to that effect; and also admit, in writing, that 
he (Van Dorn) had been too intimate with his wife. 
On the morning of the murder, he stated that he visited 
the office of Van Dorn to have him comply with these 
promises, and that Van Dorn exclaimed : "Take the door, 

you puppy!" whereupon, he drew his pistol and 

fired. I took him to General Jackson's headquarters, 
which were situated about fifteen miles from Canton, 
Mississippi. Efforts were made to take him from me by 
writ of Habeas Corpus, but I informed them that I would 
oppose any such attempt with force, and that, if they 
forced me to extremities, I would kill him myself, in pre- 
ference to surrendering him. General Jackson had him 
conveyed to Meridian, where the court was in session 
for the trial of all military causes. I learned, subse- 
quently, that he was tried and acquitted, and that he 
returned home, and took to his bosom the twice-dis- 
carded wife . Of this last statement, howeyer, I cannot 
vouch, as it is merely hearsay. As well as I can re- 
member, the scouts with me at the time were Walter 
Boster — killed near Atlanta, Georgia in a personal diffi- 
culty, (he was as brave a man as ever lived) — Edgar 
Dade, J. W. Grime and John Nelson; the former were 
Texans, the latter a Mississippian. Very much of his 
conversation in regard to Mrs. Peters and Van Dorn 
was unsuitable for print, and I have, consequently, 
omitted the greater portion of it. 

Ihe great war. 229 

The funeral of the dead General was very impressive 
and solemn. The command was mounted, and drawn 
up on either side of the street. The body, in a metalic 
casket, was laid in the hearse ; on the head of the coffin 
reposed his Mexican sombrero, bearing a gold Texas 
star; along the breast reposed his gold-hilted sword, a 
present from the State of Mississippi ; at the foot of the 
coffin stood his military boots. Following the hearse 
was his horse, bridled and saddled. As the hearse 
passed down the lines, the officers and men saluted their 
dead chieftain with the saber; and, though extremest 
silence reigned, many an eye was moist. Especially 
did his escort seem to realize their loss. They were men 
of the old army, who had followed the fortunes of the 
dashing "Major" into the Confederate army, and had 
come to look upon the General as little children do a 
father. We repeat, that the death of General Van Dorn 
was a great calamity to the Confederacy. Upon the 
death of the General, the cavalry corps was broken up; 
General Forest, with his division, remaining in Tennes- 
see, and the brigades of Whitfield (Texas), Cosby and 
Ferguson, were organized into a division, over which 
was placed Brigadier-General W. H. Jackson, a cultur- 
ed gentleman, and a brave, efficient officer, and a na- 
tive of the State of Tennessee. 

Grant had now inaugurated his titantic operations 
against the heroic city of Vicksburg, and Jackson's 
Division was ordered to the scene of operations. Prob- 
ably a month was consumed in the arduous march, 
which afforded no incident worthy of note. Several 
days before we arrived in the vicinity of the doomed 
city, the terrible artillery duel, that was progressing 
day and night, could be distinctly heard. The city 
being closely invested, there remained but little for the 
cavalry to do but cover the front of the relieving army 
being organized by General Joseph E. Johnston. Prep- 
arations were finally made for crossing the Big Black 
river — and Breckinridge's Division, with the pontoon- 


train, were actually on the bank of the river — when in- 
telligence came of the surrender. Immediately, the 
Confederate infantry fell back to Jackson, and the cav- 
alry was left to dispute the advance of General Sher- 
man, who marched on Jackson at the head of near $30,- 
000 men. During these operations, the Texas Brigade 
was commanded by General J. W. Whitfield — Colonel 
Ross being in temporary command of another bridge, 
and operating in the Tennessee valley. 

During the three day's of Sherman's march from 
Vicksburg to Jackson, the command was under fire in- 
cessantly, and often and again did the impetuosity of 
their attacks force Sherman to deploy a division to 
clear the audacious troopers from his front. The "siege 
of Jackson," so-called, the retiring of Johnston to 
Brandon, and, eventually, the departure of Sherman 
for Vicksburg, are all too well known to require repeti- 
tion here. Vide conclusion of this chapter for addition- 
al details. 

During the remainder of the summer and autumn, the 
Texas Brigade remained in front of Vicksburg, having 
an occasional skirmish to break the dull monotony of 

About this time — in the fall of 1863 — General Whit- 
field, whose health was feeble, sought service in the 
Trans-Mississippi Department, and Colonel L. S. Ross, 
of the Sixth Texas Cavalry, was named Brigadier-Gen- 
eral, and assigned to the command of the Texas Brig- 
ade. So identified did the General become with his 
brigade, that ever afterward it was known as Ross' 
Brigade. General Ross was quite young when the 
* 'wreath and stars" were conferred upon him, but he 
had been incured to war from his youth up. His father, 
Captain S. P. Ross, was, in the early days of Texas, a 
compatriot of Ben McCulloch, Hayes, Chevallie, and 
did good service on the exposed frontier against savage 
Indian and marauding Mexican. Under the brave 
father's lead, the no less gallant son took his first les- 

TliE GRfiAtf WAR. 231 

sons in war, and the truthful incidents connected with 
the youth of General Ross, if presented in print, would 
appear as a romance. The strong individuality of Gen. 
Ross marked him from the commencement of the civil 
war, while his magnetic nature, and noble qualities of 
head and heart, made him almost the idol of the whole 
brigade. The boys were proud of their dashing young 
General, and I doubt if he would have accepted a Ma- 
jor-General's commission, unless conditioned that the 
old brigade should remain with him. As one instance, 
among hundreds that could be given, I copy from a re- 
cent letter from B. P. Simmons, who was a gallant sold- 
ier of the Sixth Texas Regiment of Cavalry, showing 
the affection that existed between the General and the 

"I was with the command at the battle of Corinth, 
where I was wounded; and, right here, I wish to make 
mention of General Ross (God bless him!), who as- 
sisted me in getting off the field of battle. I had the 
calf of my leg shot away in a charge we made on Friday 
evening, when I was conveyed back to the hospital — I 
suppose some three miles to the rear — and was 
placed on a blanket between Goodson King and Spear- 
man, both belonging to Company D, Sixth Texas, 
Both of them had their legs shattered by grape shot. 
King died that night, and Spearman the next morning 
about eight o'clock., As the army retreated on Saturday 
morning, General Ross placed me on his own horse, and 
carried me safely out of danger." 

This is an incident that we read of in the exploits of 
ideal heroes in romances ; but how seldom do we ever 
come upon the incident verified, as in this instance? 

General Ross was fortunate in the selection of his 
staff officers. Captain D. R. Gurley, than whom a 
more perfect and accomplished gentleman does not ex- 
ist, was the Assistant Adjutant- General, and served his 
chief, throughout the war, with intelligence, fidelity, 
and signal courage. Next to the General, I doubt if 


Captain Gurly was not the most popular man in the 

In January, 1863, the brigade was sent to guard a 
train, loaded with arms for the army, in the Trans- 
Mississippi Department. The weather was bitter cold, 
the smaller steams being frozen over. The men were 
thinly clad, and suffered terribly. The roads in the 
swamp being found impassable by wagons, the rifles 
were taken from the boxes, and each man, from the 
General down, took two guns and carried them to the 
river, where, with much difficulty, they were crossed 
over — an artillery duel, between a gun -boat and the 
Confederate battery, being in progress all the while. 
Sherman was now preparing for his celebrated raid 
through Mississippi, and General Ross hastened to the 
theater of operations. An expedition of gun-boats and 
transports, started up the Yazoo river about the same 
time that Shermam set out. To this latter expedition, 
General Ross paid his attention. The enemy landed 
at Sartartia,and attacked Ross' Brigade, which was 
drawn up in line of battle just out the village. The 
Texans repulsed the enemy, who were mostly negroes 
with white officers, and closely pursued them to the 
water's edge, when Ross retired from the guns of the 
boats. The action was sharp, hot, and decisive. Gen. 
Ross was at the head of his column, encouraging his 
men by word and example. The repulsed enemy 
steamed up the river. At Liverpool, General Ross at- 
tacked the enemy in his floating fort. The Texan 
sharpshooters soon caused the port- holes to be closed, 
and the enemy turned, and retreated down the river. 
Had not General Ross been called to the assistance of 
General Polk, who commanded the Confederate army in 
front of Sherman, it is not at all problematical that he 
would have driven the enemy down the Yazoo, and 
forced him to seek refuge behind the walls of Vicks- 
burg. A double-quick march now commenced for Gen. 
Polk. General Ross fell in Sherman's rear, and, by 

THE GREAT WAft. 233 

many annoying; and persistent attacks, materially re- 
tarded that General's march. . 

At Marion, Ross engaged the greater portion of the 
Union army all day in skirmishes, as if intending to at- 
tack in force. Here Sherman, doubtless, intended 
awaiting the arrival of General Smith, who, with 15,- 
000 men, was en route from Memphis join him, intend- 
ing, perhaps, when thus re-enforced, to march against 
and capture Mobile. Smith was advancing down the 
Mobile & Ohio Railroad, confronted by the indomitable 
Forrest. Ross was ordered to proceed, with the utmost 
dispatch, to General Forrest's assistance. Off the Tex- 
ans started; but, on the second day, intelligence 
reached Ross that Forrest had routed his enemy, and 
that the demoralized army of Smith was flying in con- 
fusion toward Memphis. This startling intelligence was 
sufficient to cause General Sherman to retrace his steps, 
also. General Ross was now ordered to the Yazoo, to 
complete the job he had just commenced when ordered 
away — i. e., clear the river and valley of the enemy. 
The column took up the line of march for Bentonville — 
distant from Yazoo city about ten miles, and being con- 
nected with it by a plank- road. The brigade passed 
through the village, and were encamping — two regi- 
ments, in fact, had gone into camp, and the battery was 
planted facing down the Yazoo road — when, like a clat- 
tering apparition, two of the Texan scouts dashed into 
camp hotly pursued by about two hundred negro caval- 
ry. The battery gave them a startling salute that 
emptied several saddles, when General Ross mounted 
his horse, and shouting : "Charge them!' , went clat- 
tering down the road, followed by his men, in enthusi- 

Note. — During the operations on the Yazoo, two 
young men of the Sixth Texas were brutally murdered 
by the enemy, after surrender; and thus was inaugur- 
ated an informal "war to the knife," which claimed 
many victims who otherwise would only have exper- 
ienced the rigors of captivity. 


astic confusion. The " black apes," as the boys called 
the negro soldiers, were pursued into the lines of Yazoo 
city, and the weary and victorious Texans camped about 
a mile in front of their lines. Finally, after one or two 
days spent in skirmishing, General Ross determined to 
attack them. A detachment of ten men from Company 
A, Third Texas, drove in the pickets, which movement 
was followed up by the advance of the whole brigade. 
The enemy was driven into their bomb proofs, which 
were so effectually sealed by the Texan sharpshooters, 
that not a Federal gun could be heard. The Texans 
charged into the city, and drove the enemy aboard of 
the gun-boats, and these iron monsters found it con- 
venient to ride at anchor in the middle of the river. 
The guns of the boats were practically useless at such 
short range, as the river being higher than the country 
immediately around, the shells passed harmlessly over 
the heads of the Texans into the hills. 

Night closed the scene, and General Ross drew off his 
men to the camp of the previous evening, intending to 
pay his respects to the enemy again in the morning. 
But the commander of the "black apes" did not wish 
another repetition of the "sealing-up process," conse- 
quently, he discreetly slipped aboard his boats, weighed 
anchor, and steamed for Vicksburg, to compare notes of 
failure and disappointment with General Sherman. 
The remainder of the campaign was confined to repell- 
ing raids from Vicksburg until about the last of April, 
when General Ross was ordered to re -enforce the army 
of General Johnston in North Georgia. This long 
march was prosecuted in a somewhat leisurely manner, 
the command often halting, for several days, to recup- 
erate. One of these halting-places was Tuscaloosa, Al- 
abama, at which point two members of Company A, 

Third Texas — Harvey Gregg and Gray — were 

drowned in the Black Warrior river. 

Ross* Brigade reached the army of General Johnston 
as it was crossing the Etowah river, and was immedi- 


ately assigned to duty at the front. From this time on, 
the fall of Atlanta, the brigade was daily under fire. 
For two months the men did not change their apparel, 
partook of only cold rations, and, during most of the 
time, were exposed to heavy rains — both from the 
clouds, and from the throats of the enemy's guns, The 
engagement at New Hope church was a brilliant action, 
and reflected luster on Texan arms. General Ross 
brought on the engagement, and the brigade with those 
of Granberry and Ector, repulsed, with heavy loss, a 
greatly superior corps of the enemy. General Johnston 
warmly congratulated the troops engaged, upon the im- 
mediate field of battle. 

The lines of Sherman were now fast closing around 
Atlanta, yet the wily old chief of the Confederates dis- 
puted, stubbornly, each inch of ground, and every ad- 
vance of the Northern army was dearly paid for. Sher- 
man became impatient, or doubted the eventual success 
of his movement in front, and had recourse to cavalry 
raids in the rear of the Confederate position with a view 
to cutting their lines of communication. General Mc- 
Cook, with an expeditionary force of cavalry number* 
ing about 5,000, passed the left flank of the Confederate 
position, and gained the rear; but so closely was he 
pursued by the Texas Brigade and the Eighth Texas 
Cavalry (the Terry Rangers), that but little opportunity 
was allowed him to destroy the railroad. Finally, he 
was brought to bay near Jonesboro, and attacked so 
vigorously, that his forces were demoralized, many 
were captured, and the remainder put to flight.* Not 
being fully satisfied with the result of McCook's failure, 
General Sherman dispatched General Kilpatrick on a 
similar mission. 

*In this engagement fell William L. Thornton, the 
pride of his regiment and friends. Texas never pos- 
sessed a son who gave greater promise than he. Dar- 
ing and brave to a fault, he was sensitive, and refused 
promotion frequently tendered. 


The Legion was on picket. This brave old regiment, 
handled by its gallant Colonel, John H. Broocks, con- 
tested the ground to the last, but was compelled to 
yield to overwhelming numbers, and Kilpatrick turned 
the flank of the Confederate position, and proceeded to 
the rear; but the vigilant Ross soon had his men in the 
saddle and in pursuit. A little after daylight, Ross 
struck the enemy in the flank, and inflicted considera- 
ble loss on him. But the innumerable attacks made on 
this raiding column by Ross' Brigade, are now impos- 
sible of description. Suffice it to say, that no oppor- 
tunity for attack was allowed to go unimproved. Fi- 
nally, Kilpatrick attempted to enter Lovejoy Station, 
and finding a division of infantry there, retired. Gen- 
eral Ross had formed his brigade in the enemy's rear, 
expecting to be supported by the brigades of Cosby and 
Ferguson— neither of which put in an appearance. 
Finding the infantry too strong for him, and meeting 
with an unexpected attack from Ross in the rear, Kil- 
patrick attempted to intimidate the Texans by a furious 
shelling, and then charged through the line — a feat by 
no means remarkable, when we consider that Ross did 
not have exceeding five hundred men, and Kilpatrick as 
many thousands. Add to this the fact that the Texans 
were dismounted, and armed with short guns — not 
having a bayonet in the brigade — and it will not be 
wondered at that they did not repulse a cavalry charge 
ten .times their number. Ross lost two or three men 
killed and wounded, and about thirty prisoners, many 
of whom escaped the first night. 

Scarcely had the charging column passed the line, 
when the indomitable Ross had his bugler to sound the 
rally and, in an incredibly short space, renewed his 
unceasing attacks upon the enemy's rear. From this 
time on, Kilpatrick found no rest, and, evidently, was 
bent upon the sole plan of making the best of his way 
out of a bad scrape. He was somewhat more fortunate 
than his predecessor, McCook, and made Sherman's 


lines in pretty good order. As the author was cap- 
tured in the charge at Lovejoy Station, the remainder 
of the narrative is told as it was told to him. Nothing 
like a minute description has been attempted in the 
hasty tracing of the Georgia campaign. Each day was 
a battle, without characteristics to distinguish it from 
the battle of the day before, or that of the next day; 
and that campaign, being, as it was, one series of con- 
tests, will always defy the efforts of the conscientious 
historian. He may deal with it in the concrete — in the 
abstract, never. 


The Texas Brigade, in command of General J. W. 
Whitfield, took up the line of march from Maury county 
Tennessee, for the purpose of re-enforcing the army of 
General Johnston, who was attempting the deliverance 
of Pemberton's beleaguered legions in Vicksburg, on 
May 19, 1863. On arriving in Mississippi, Colonel L. 
S. Ross was placed in command of a brigade composed 
of his own regiment, the Sixth Texas Cavalry, and Col- 
onel Pinson's regiment — the First Mississippi Cavalry — 
and dispatched on an expedition in the Tennessee val- 
ley. The remainder of the Texas Brigade commenced 
duty on the line of the Big Black, which service con- 
sisted of frequent skirmishes with the enemy on the 
other bank, picket duty, scouting expeditions, etc. 
The head-quarters of General "Whitfield were estab- 
lished at Bolton's Depot. 

The vigilant and courageous Colonel Broocks, and 
his veteran Legion, signalized themselves upon this 
field by valuable and conspicuous services rendered on 
more than one occasion ; among which, we are enabled 
to record the following : One day the Federals were 
grazing some one hundred and fifty beeves in threaten- 
ing pFoximity to the line of demarcation — the river. 


Colonel Broocks, upon his own motion, silently crossed 
the river, and, by a rapid movement, dispersed the 
guard and captured the cattle; all of which he deliv- 
ered to the Commissary of the brigade, much to the 
gratification of his not overfed comrades of the other 

On July 5th, the Legion went on picket duty in its 
turn. On the 6th, General Sherman commenced ad- 
vancing eastward, and 16,000 of his men crossed at 
Messenger's Ferry. The Legion was posted, in a 
slightly -elevated wood, on the east side of the river, and 
commanded an open field through which the enemy 
must past. The position was one eminently adapted to 
a stubborn defense, and the gallant Broocks improved 
its natural advantages by a determination truly heroic, 
to hold his ground until re- enforcements should come to 
his aid, or he be driven from the field by the mere mo- 
mentum of overwhelming odds. For four hours did the 
Legion hold the position against all efforts of the enemy 
to dislodge them ; and it was only after the Federals 
had gained a foothold on the eminence, and, despairing 
of assistance, that the iron-willed officer consented to 
lead his men from the field rendered glorious by their 
valor; a movement which the brave Texans executed 
with perfect order. The report of prisoners taken on 
the field, represented the Federal loss as very heavy, 
and rumor stated that General Osterhaus was wounded, 
or killed. The primary cause of the stubborn resistance 
of the Legion, was the appearance of an impostor, who 
represented himself to Colonel Broocks as a Confederate 
officer, and showed a dispatch purporting to come from 
General Johnston, in which the commander doubted the 
fall of Vicksburg, and urged Colonel Broocks to dispute 
the advance of the enemy until he could ascertain the 
strength of the force in his front. The Legion leisurely 
fell back to the line of the Ninth Texas Cavalry, about 
two miles distant, which regiment had come forward to 
relieve the Legion. Although his men and horses sadly 


needed rest, food and sleep, Colonel Broocks complied 
with the urgent request of Colonel Jones, of the Ninth, 
to form the Legion in supporting distance of his regi- 
ment. The enemy soon began the advance, and opened 
upon the Ninth with artillery and deafening volleys of 
small arms. Colonel Broocks hastened to the assistance 
of his brave young comrade, Colonel Jones, and con- 
tinued to dispute the ground with the enemy, foot by 
foot, from position to position, until ten o'clock at night, 
when the storm of battle lulled. The contestants slept 
upon the field, in the midst of their respective killed and 
wounded, separated by but a few hundred yards. Gen- 
eral Whitfield, with the Third Regiment, came up in the 
night, and, with the early dawn of the morning, the 
contest was renewed with redoubled exertions on either 
side. On every foot of ground, from Bolton's Depot to 
Clinton, a distance of eight miles, did the brave old 
Whitfield, and his indomitable veterans, struggle with 
the overwhelming numbers of Sherman, and force them 
to pay dearly for every advantage gained. 

At Clinton, the brigade remained two or three days, 
as the enemy did not advance. At the end of this time, 
and when one -half of the brigade was absent from camp 
in quest of forage for the horses, excepting the Legion, 
the Federals resumed the offensive. General Whitfield 
dispatched Colonel Broocks immediately to the support 
of the skirmishers, and soon the Legion, formed in an 
open field upon a slight elevation, the cynosure of hun- 
dreds of admiring eyes, was engaged with the enemy. 
With such coolness, tact, and decision, did the gallant 
Broocks handle his men on this occasion, that he elic- 
ited the thanks of his superiors in command, and won 
for himself, and his incomparable Legion, the admira- 
tion of all. A young Mississippian, who was in the 
lines of the enemy, and present in the field -hospitals 
the night of the engagement, subsequently reported the 
killed and wounded of the enemy as approximating near 
one hundred. The loss of the Legion was slight. 


Late in October, 1863, the Legion, commanded by its 
brave and efficient Colonel, E. R. Hawkins, together 
with Company E, of the Third (Lieutenants Soap and 
B. T. Roberts), were ordered to report to Colonel L. S. 
Ross, commanding the temporary brigade before men- 
tioned, to which had been added Willis' Battalion of 
Texas Cavalry. It had been the original purpose of the 
expedition for Ross to re-enforce General Forrest, and, 
together, attempt the capture of Memphis. But, at 
Grenada, Ross learned that General Forrest was other- 
wise engaged, and had, consequently, abandoned his 
purpose in regard to the original conception. Colonel 
Ross was summoned, with his command, to Pontotoc, 
Mississippi, by General S. D. Lee; and his brigade, to- 
gether with that of General Ferguson, and some com- 
panies of artillery, were organized into a division. The 
command was reviewed at Pontotoc by General Joseph 
Ei Johnston, and there witnessed the hanging of a 
Federal spy, who was dressed in Confederate uniform, 
and who, probably, was a member of the Fourth Illinois 

From Pontotoc, the division moved into North Ala- 
bama, where General W. T. Sherman, at the head of 
some 30,000 men, was marching along the railroad, up 
the Tennessee river, en route to re-enforce the beaten 
army of Rosecranz, at Chattanooga. General Lee pro- 
ceeded to dispute the passage of the valley with the 
enemy, and so skillfully did he employ the limited 
means at his disposal, that General Sherman found it 
impossible to make the celerity of movement necessary 
to arrive at Chattanooga in time to succor his comrades 
there. The fighting was incessant, and the weather 
bitter cold, which called upon the thinly-clad men for 
the exercise of all the fortitude and endurance that they 
oould summon. 

Colonel John H. Broocks, with nine companies de- 
tailed from the Sixth Texas, Legion, and First Missis- 
sippi, was dispatched to destroy the railroad from Bear 


creek, eastward. This was an arduous and fatiguing 
task, but the men performed it faithfully — burning the 
ties, heating the rails, and bending them double. While 
in the performance of this duty, Colonel Broocks was 
apprised of the fact that General Lee had fallen back on 
Bear creek, and was preparing to give battle. Broocks 
promptly repaired to the scene at the head of his nine 
companies, and participated in the spirited engagement 
which ensued. But it was in vain that General Lee at- 
tempted, with his small force, to check the progress of 
Sherman's legions. He/was driven from the field by 
the mere weight of numerical superiority. General 
Sherman crossed the Tennessee thirty- five miles below 
Tuscumbia, and thus avoiding the lion in his way, pro- 
ceeded to his destination. 

Colonel Ross now set out for Mississippi with his com- 
mand, and, at Okolona, the Legion left for the brigade 
proper, which was now commanded by Colonel H. P. 
Mabry, of the Third — General Whitfield having, in con- 
sequence of continued ill- health, gone home. The Le- 
gion reported to Colonel Mabry at a point about twenty 
miles west of the town of Canton. General Ross, with 
the remainder of the brigade — Sixth Texas, First Miss- 
issippi, and Willis' Battalion — moved northward from 
Okolona to intercept a body of Federal cavalry who 
were raiding in that section. Ross met the body in bat- 
tle, defeated it, and drove it into Memphis, when he re- 
turned to Canton, and assumed command of the Texas 
Brigade; Colonel H. P. Mabry, at the same time, being 
assigned to the command of a brigade in the eavalry 
corps of Lieutenant- General N. B. Forrest. From this 
period, until the termination of th ewar, it is believed 
Col. Mabry remained with the cavalry corps of Gen. For- 
rest; commanding, at first, a brigade, and, subsequent- 
ly, a division. The author regrets, exceedingly, that 
he has no data upon which to predicate a narrative of 
the sterling services of the gallant Mabry while attached 
to this command. But to have won the confidence and 


esteem of the incomparable Forrest to such a degree 
that he would not consent to part with his Texan Lieu- 
tenant, should have sufficed for the ambition of any 
man. Of Colonel H. P. Mabry, it can be truthfully 
said that he possessed all the higher qualities that enter 
into the heroic composition ; and, through his accom- 
plishments as a ripe scholar and profound jurist, he is 
no less conspicuous in the walks of civil life than he 
was on the field. Colonel Mabry has a future that will 
yet shed a luster on the annals of Texas. 

In the progress of the fight with McCook, Lieutenant 
T. J. Towles, of Company G, Third Texas Cavalry, was 
dangerously wounded, and remained, for some time, 
within the lines of the enemy. Says Lieutenant Towles : 

"As I was sitting, with my back to a tree for support, 
my clothing saturated with blood, from the loss of which 
I was very faint and weak, General McCook, accompa- 
nied by some members of his staff, halted in front of me, 
and the General remarked: 'Major, you appear to be 
suffering.' I replied that I thought I was mortally 
wounded, and requested surgical aid. The General re- 
plied that he could not even give his own wounded the 
necessary attention, and said, apologetically: 'You 
have been a soldier long enough to know how these t 
things are, and you must not think hard of me.' He 
wished to know what forces were opposing him on the 
immediate field. I replied that he could form as correct 
an estimate of their numerical strength as I could, as 
the divisions of Jackson, Wheeler, and Roddy were 
present; whereupon, he remarked to his staff: ' We 
?nust get out of this V and immediately rode away." 

This revelation of Lieutenant Towles explains the 
panic with which McCook's men were seized, when 
General Ross, soon after, bore down upon them in the 
headlong charge which routed and dispersed them. 
Too much praise can not be accorded this brave officer 
for his fortitude and loyal devotion to his country's 
cause, though suffering from excrutiating pains that 


amounted to agony. Captain Towles is now a prosper- 
ous merchant of Camden, Van Zandt county, Texas, and 
is worthy the homage of all who love the true, the 
noble, and the brave. 

Long may his voyage of life be fanned by the 
breezes of prosperity, is the wish of his friend, the 
author. Lieutenant T. J. Towles was long the brave, 
vigilant, and efficient commander of the brigade scouts, 
and as such, was the eyes and ears of the command. 
In the discharge of this hazardous service, he won the 
confidence of his commanding general, and he always 
slept with a sense of security when the faithful Towles 
was on duty. Lieutenant Dan H. Alley performed a 
similar duty for the division commander, General W. H. 
Jackson, and was always equal to any emergency that 
might arise. Of him we have spoken elsewhere. 

During the Mississippi campaign, the chivalrous 
Lieutenant Hill Taylor commanded the brigade scouts, 
and during the intervals between his engagements with 
the enemy, found time to cement one upon the basis of 
love with a faire ladie of Silver creek, whom he led to 
the hymeneal altar when the "cruel war was over. ,, 

Distinguished as solitary scouts, or spies, the names 
> of B. S. Triplett, and J. W. Montgomery — the present 
efficient Sheriff of Rains county — were pre-eminent. 
Triplett fell at the hands of an assassin, as elsewhere 
stated, but Wiley Montgomery is winning as many en- 
comiums in the civic walks of life, as he did in the more 
hazardous paths of war. He is worthy of all the honors 
his fellow- citizens may confer upon him. — [Taken from 
Rose' History beginning with Chapter XXII. ~] 


Chapter XXX. 


The extremes, to which the Southern states were 
driven, by the blockade may be worthy of note for all 
the luxuries of life were withheld and nothing to eat, or 
wear was allowed to enter our posts and as the south 
was almost exclusively a farming country, very few 
factories had been established and such machinery as 
was used in the manufacture of the goods, wares, etc., 
was run to its utmost capacity and was soon worn out, 
or worthless. Coffee soon played out, and there was 
none, and great was the complaint, for coffee was the 
drink at all Southern tables. Spices and black pepper, 
soon followed, ginger and nutmegs, also numbered with 
the things that were, salt there was none imported, and 
was soon worth a fancy price. Axes, shovels and all # 
manner of tools used on the farm soon became worn, 
and the engenious blacksmith performed an operation 
he called upsetting or beating them out and soon all the 
farmers tools bore the marks of the awkward and un- 
skilled mechanic and the ever faithful housewife con- 
trived a. system of substitution for the needed foods and 
condiments for the table, and in many places a small 
gourd was used as a substitute for the broken china and 
was passed down the table sometimes on a china saucer 
or tin plater or another section of a larger gourd and 
filled with a substitute for coffee, made of corn, wheat, 
beans, potatoes, okra, either one or two or more mixed 
as most suited to the taste of the housewife. And will 
here say that this writer has tried them all and none of 


them were satisfactory, but about the best substitute is 
made from equal parts of beans and goober peas parched 
black and well made into a decoction and creamed and 
sugored very highly passed very well at the end of the 
second year for coffee anywhere in our lines . 

But of all the inventions there was nothing that 
equalled ingenuity of the woman in the spinning and 
weaving fabrics for clothing from the cotton field to the 
garment. All apparel was wrought by the hands of 
Southern women picking the seeds from the cotton, 
carding into rolls and spinning into thread warp and 
woof and the weaving into cloth, then the dyeing, 
shrinking were all to be carefully done before the fabric 
was ready for the garment, all of this required a special 
aparatus. The cords, the wheel, the loom, the warping 
bars, with harness sleighs, shuttles, etc., were to be 
found at every farmhouse and were under the sole di- 
rection of the farm women and was the pride of the 
household. The wheel, loom and harness were usually 
made by some mechanic of the neighborhood, but the 
shuttle and sleigh were the handiwork of some special 
artist, often were sent for 50 miles to purchase a sleigh 
or shuttle and at the end of a long journey with a 
wagon $2.50 or $3.00 would pay for the goods wanted. 
The wheel was not specially an article of pride and any 
wheel was good that run lightly and true enough not to 
cost the band, but the loom was a huge structure made 
of heavy timbers with double mortices and all angles 
strongly braced and held in place by a system of draw 
wedges that fitted to holes in the tenants after passing 
through its mortice in the upright frame then a high 
bench on which the weaver sat, completed the outfit. It 
was a huge affair, stout as a bridge and large beyond 
reason, for it would fill any„room in the house until one 
could scarcely pass without a severe bump against some 
of its many parts. This writer has often thought that a 
loom in the kitchen and a wheelbarrow in the back yard 
are both dangerous, or were before we had electric 


lights, for the loom will bump you when and where you 
feel safest and a wheelbarrow will throw you farther and 
in a direction least calculated, of any two things now 

But the cards, there was the trouble before the war 
they were worth 50cts a pair, simple little hand cards on 
two small boards with handles in the middle of each at 
right angles and marked Joshua Whitmore No. 10 cot- 
ton cards. They soon became scarce and the price was 
soon one dollar, then five, ten, twenty-five, fifty and one 
hundred dollars then not to be had at any price. This 
same little cotton cards, without cards was to be without 
clothing and no substitute could be made to work, no 
one could make them, not even to imitate or substitute 
for them. If there was any other maker except Whit- 
more he was not known in the South, and as our backs 
became bare, we realized what it means to blockade our 
ports. No clothing from home this winter, our folks 
have no cotton cards, was heard in the army. If to be 
had send us some cotton cards, wrote our mothers and 
sisters. Times was looking squally in Texas and the 
want of cards was felt in the army. This writer and his 
messmate had one pair of pants that were presentable 
between them, the other pair were badly worn at the 
first and second angles and when on duty the man out 
wore the breeches, which were duely changed on relief. 

But Texas women were in the fight to stay, and our 
women always on the lookout for cards by some means 
learned that cards could be bought for gold at Charles- 
ton, S. C, and forth with Mr. A. E. Brooks of Mt. Ver- 
non, Texas, an old merchant, was dispatched across the 
continent, with no lines of travel but such as were con- 
stantly disturbed and in many places cut off and held by 
the enemy and across rivers and mountains, through a 
country devastated by the armies of both opposing fac- 
tions. He started attended by the prayers of the 
women and he braved all opposing elements and 
after about four months of hardships and disappoint- 

the great war. 247 

ing privations he returned and brought the real genuine 
Whitmore's No. 10 cotton cards to the joy of the women 
and to the relief of much suffering. 

Mr. Brooks is still living a whole and jovial old man 
and can still tell of his journey across the continent 
after cotton cards, and many of us people believe his 
good works will be rewarded in the next world, where 
we feel he should be made a Card-i-nal. 


It was just before the fall of Vicksburg and while the 
pickets were constantly exchanging shots, that this 
writer was detailed a musician, and as such was at his 
post as infirmary to his command which duty was in 
part to care for the wounded in battle, and as all hands 
were needed in front a detachment was sent to Jackson 
and were placed under an officer on provost and fatigue 
duty, guarding prisoners, picking up straglers, and 
keeping the negroes at work of the fortifications around 
that city. 

And while thus on duty, about the 6th of July, 1863, 
he received a message by a wounded soldier, that his 
brother was mortally wounded at Queenhill and was 
carried to the Hospital at Clinton, some ten miles away, 
and to come. 

Early the next morning he went to the officer in com- 
mand and asked a permit to visit him at Clinton. He 
was told he could not go. Upon which denial he thought 
of a Texas mother and sisters and a dying brother, 
flashed like lightning through his mind and set him 
wild, and in this state of mind he informed that officer 
that he would go if he had to fight his way, and spoke 
it in a manner very unbecoming an inferior, and said 
officer at once proceeded to have him arrested, upon 
which the writer discharged a pistol at said officer and 
left for Clinton. The ball only grazed his arm. 

On reaching Clinton all was confusion, the doctors 


were dressing wounds and my brother lay pale upon a 
cot still bleeding, he appeared to know me but did not 
seem to realize the surroundings for the doctor had him 
under the influence of opiates. The Doctor Vandyke 
would not allow me to talk to him, as he was shot 
through the lungs, and to look at him was more than I 
could bear, so I walked out and lay down and ten thous- 
and thoughts passed my sore and troubled mind. I 
could only stay a few minutes, for the enemy were 
already in the town and the last line of our army's rear 
guard were then passing. 

Again I went to the doctor and told him the particu- 
lars, took out my purse, which contained about three 
hundred dollars of Confederate script, and gave it to 
the doctor with the request that he save him if possible, 
and in case he should die, to give him a coffin if to be 
had, and mark well the grave, for I fully intended to 
carry the bones to his mother's home, if I should ever 
go to that place. And if "Oh that hope" he should live 
to write me or my command and if so we could not be 
separated long again. This writer took a long look at 
his pale face and in his frenzy he called for mother. A 
weakness then overshadowed the troubled mind and no 
note was kept of time. 

The rattle of small arms was the first recollection, and 
the clatter of horses feet told of the enemy's advance, 
a few balls passed over us and I again was a soldier, 
awakened as from a sleep and I aroused to realize that 
I had no arms with me but stubbornly I left the lighted 
hospital, only a brush harbor, and started out through 
fields, for the enemy had all the roads, and wandered 
not knowing or caring whither, but in some woodland a 
mile or two from the sickening scene I ran upon a vi- 
dette who duly took me in, it was dark but on giving 
my name and Regiment was told that I was in the hands 
of Mack Blair of the Third Texas Cavalry. An expla- 
nation followed and Mack stood guard while the writer 
dozed in a troubled and unsound sleep. 


It was beginning to brighten up in the east when the 
relief came and we went back to the Third Texas Regi- 
ment where breakfast was served of bread cold and meat 
raw, and on getting the full story Mack and his mess- 
mates advised me to go back to Jackson and report for 
duty just as if nothing had happened. This advice was 
against the intention of the writer, but the Ninth Texas 
was on duty on another road and would be ha?d to 
reach and I could not think of leaving the Confederate 
States' service without letting my messmates and offi- 
cers know the full reason. 

Reluctantly I returned to Jackson and was duely ar- 
rested and charged with disobedience in the face of the 
enemy and was placed under guard. In a few days, the 
courtmartial set in the State house at Jackson and 
there Generals Hardie and Polk and another, not now 
remembered, with their clerks sat to try criminals. The 
soldier was guarded by Mortimer Hart of Company E, 
and it did not take them two minutes to decide and my 
guard was ordered to do something. Not understanding 
just what it was, we walked out and Mort informed me 
that I was clear. Again the spirit of war thrilled my 
veins, and again were vows renewed to fight to the last 
for the Confederacy. 

Some of the officers never did appear to approve of 
my conduct. Among them will name Col. Dud W. 
Jones, but Col. Tom Berry was kind enough to say in 
my hearing that I was not to be blamed, and Captain 
Haynes was ever afterwards my friend and his sympa- 
thy appeared real for he had lost from his side a noble 

After the trial this writer went back to his company 
and never knew or cared whether those earthworks 
around Jackson were finished or not. It was only a few 
days after this when a fever set up and he was left at a 
farmhouse for many days. On convalescing returned 
to the command and found that the enemy had 
again fallen back to Vicksburg and left only a small 

250 ftECOLLECTiONS 0# 

force to guard those little stations and Jackson had only 
a moderate guard. 

Had not been in camp but a short while when Dr. 
Vandike called for me in our camp as he was returning 
from the hospital to his state Georgia. He informed me 
that my brother was still alive and with good care would 
get well. He told me that his wounds were running 
goodmatter and doing well. 

Of course to see him was then all my thought, and on 
consulting Col. Jones, was informed that it would not be 
practicable. Col. Berry said I could go. Captain 
Haynes said go if I chose and told me I should not be 
reported for a reasonable time. I think five days was 
the limit and my messmates said go. And go I did, and 
will tell you of my trip on a new page. 


As no leave of absence would be granted to me — only 
the promises of some of the officers — my conclusions 
were to go and see my brother, a distance of not more 
than twenty miles, as our encampment was between 
Jackson and Brannon, but it was held by the Yanks and 
the Confederates had a lot of scouts and the fears were 
if the Confederates got me I would be a supposed de- 
serter, and if the Yanks got me I would be a supposed 
spy. So there were fears on either side and I must 
make it without the knowledge of either. Such were 
my thoughts on making my visit. 

Early in the morning I rode out from the camp, only 
one or two of my messmates knowing where I intended 
going, and after their promises to make it the best pos- 
sible for me I rode away, and as soon as I cleared the 
camp I took a little by-road that led in a direction that 
suited my purpose. This road led in between some 
farms and into the Pearl river bottom some five or six 
miles below Jackson. It was all woodland and nice 
high bottom. Soon I come to the river, it was a pretty, 

TllE GREA*T WAR^ 251 

clear stream, as its name indicates, and I felt sure that 
I could cross it any place that the banks would admit. 
I soon found a trail down to the sandbar and the oppo- 
site looking fair. It was only the work of a few minutes 
to undress and swim it once across. I started for Clin- 
ton avoiding the roads, for I knew that they were all 
picketed. The day was dark and drizley after the 
morning, and I soon discovered that I had lost my bear- 
ings and was lost, but finally come to a lane that led in 
a direction to intersect the Jackson and Clinton road. 
I followed it and to my surprise soon came in sight of a 
body of Yankee cavalry going in direction of Jackson 
and I awaited until they all passed and were gone, then 
I ventured out into the main road and took the road for 
Clinton. I had only traveled a short time when on 
looking up I discovered two Yankee troopers coming 
towards me, but some distance away just there to my 
great relief I discovered a weak place in the fence to my 
left and through it I passed out of the lane into a corn 
field on a good run which brought me to the back side 
near a mile from the road, as they did not follow me, I 
tied my horse in some woodland and fed him with some 
corn from the field and left him to eat while X went to 
the top of the hill to reconoiter the situation. When I 
got out on the hill I could see a town I took to be Clin- 
ton and no sign of any one after me. Being very hun- 
gry I ate my ration that I had with me and I now dis- 
covered that it was late in the evening and concluded to 
make it dark before I left this retreat, and lay down to 
take a nap in the field at a distance from my horse lest 
I should be surprised and made a prisoner. I was 

awakened by a rain falling upon me and it seemed to be 

getting late and appeared dusky. I returned to my 

horse and again to the road and the rain increased and 

it soon became very dark, but I rode slowly in direction 

of the town. The rain appeared to increase with the 

darkness. I soon come in sight of the town light and as 


my plans had been matured I put them to the test of 

On the roadside stood a small house with no yard 
fence (as most of the yard fences had been burned by 
the Yankees) and I rode up to the door and knocked 
for some time and finally a man came to the door, I told 
him my business, that I was a soldier and wanted him 
to take my horse and saddle and keep it and if I did not 
return on the next night it was to be his, he gave me 
the keys to a box -made house that stood near the house 
and told me to take all things into it and leave them, 
which I did, unsaddled my horse and haltered him up 
in the smoke house, leaving my saddle and overcoat, 
haversack, etc., in his smoke house. I then went into 
his room where he had some supper prepared for me. 
I learned from him that all the wounded had been taken 
to the college building which was used as a hospital and 
and that the Yankees were on picket near the house 
just down the hillside and the reserve was over at 
Clinton, about one mile and a half away, and the guard 
stood all the time at the hospital and that the Yankee 
surgeons were then attending the wounded. After 
getting all the details that my friend was in possession 
of I bid him good bye and shook his hand with the 
warmth that I felt, just here there was a curious occur- 
rence that I have never understood. When I bade him 
good bye, he said to me that the woman, (who was 
clearing the dishes from supper) also wanted to say 
good bye. I shook her hand and discovered that she 
was a negro woman and was crying. I felt that she too 
was a friend. 

When I again started out I found it was still raining 
an£ I made my way towards town, I slipped along and 
soon discovered the pickets on horseback, two standing 
together in the road and I took down the ditch that ran 
along the road and with the water was soon past the out 
post and slowly crawled along down the hill in the mud 
and slush. There was aflat branch at the foot of the 


hill some forty feet wide but not deep and the water 
made some noise amons: some logs just below the road, 
while here I heard the relief coming down the hill from 
town on horseback and I sat down in the water among 
the logs until they passed on, and the return was made 
while here in the water, I took to shivering, not cold, 
but shook so bad that I thought I would die soon, but I 
looked up the hill and saw the light in the large brick 
hospital and resolved to go ahead and not shake and as 
I was wet and muddy I felt that I could not be worsted, 
so on I went up the deep ditch on the roadside which 
led up to the hospital fence. While crawling up the 
ditch on my hands and feet my hand fell on the ampu- 
tated limb (leg) of some poor hospital sufferer, and at 
once I knew that I was crawling through the cess pools 
of the hospital, and then I realized the sickening stench 
and it made me very sick, yes very sick. I finally made 
it up to the fence, and after washing off as good as I 
could, fcr there was plenty of water and was raining 
like blazes, I crawled out to the fence to look. A guard 
stood at each gate and there was some passing that I 
supposed were the doctors and nurses, going in and 

The house was a large brick built with wide halls 
crossing in the center and leading to large doors on 
three sides and to a window in the rear which opened to 
the cistern only a few feet from it and was used only by 
the nurses in attendance. As I could see them often 
getting fresh water. I crawled around towards that 
window intending to climb the fence but on my way I 
discovered that some pailings were off and an opening 
had been made probably by hogs and I made it through 
the fence and was soon alongside the house wall and 
the nurses passed near me when they come for water. 
I stood against the wall for a long while and finally the 
doctors all left the wards and went out through the 
gates. All soon became still and I stole along the cots 
to try and see the face of my brother but all my efforts 


were vain. Finally I sunk down by the window and 
awaited until a nurse come for water and as he stepped 
over the window sill I gently took a hold of his foot. 
He stooped to see what it was and I whispered to him 
my message. 

He was kind, his name was Joe, and he told me my 
brother was in his ward and was doing well and that I 
should see him, to await till later, he would arrange as 
soon as it was safe. Later he came for me and led me 
into his mess room and hastily stripped me and gave me 
a hospital shirt and drawers and took my clothes in 
charge, as these he said, were all I would need, and 
there to my surprise I found that I had worn a big pistol 
and my spus which he handled with forebodings. But 
he put them through a trapdoor under the stove and I 
felt that they were well hid. Then he led me to a clean 
bunk next to my brother in the same row. He was 
asleep and knew nothing of my coming. I looked at 
him as he slept and thought of war, the horrows and in- 
conveniences of war. The wounded lay on single bed- 
steads arranged in rows like unto pews in a church and 
it had so happened that one man that had occupied the 
next bunk to my brother had died the day 
before and had just been buried and his bunk cleaned 
up in time for me to occupy so close a position. 

As I had said my brother was asleep when I took the 
bed he looked weak and thin and showed that his suf- 
ferings had been severe. In short, he appeared to me to 
be much older, for as I studied his sleeping face that was 
plump and full when he was well now looked shrunken 
and the seams that connected the divisions of the skull 
could be plainly traced. He did not look like my 
brother, he looked like a thin old man. His nose was 
too sharp and his lips too thin and flabby and I fancied 
that his hair was a shade or two too dark and there I 
discovered that he was ugly and not the jovial, good 
natured and lovable brother who was always ready to 
take hard duty off of me, but an old ugly, pevish and 


cross looking patient lay before me that had little favor 
of my brother. Thus pondering in mind my eyes kept 
searching new features in the face and the lights grew 
dim, and I could only see an outline of a poor old man 
at least sixty years old and the lights were more dim — 
dim I was asleep. After a long wetting, weary, scared, 
then dry clean clothes, a clean bed, sleep will surely 
follow. I do not know how long I . slept, but a voice 
whispering near me awoke me, and all I heard was 
"your brother has come," that is him on Bullard's 
bunk. I looked over, and to my joy that ghastly look 
had left him and his open eye told too well it was broth- 
er. Our hands met, I felt his bony fingers and I knew 
my brother and his look changed and those fancies were 
driven away with the first look from his kind eyes. The 
nurse then dressed his wounds and I discovered that his 
wounds rested on oil cloths, which protected his bed and 
these cloths were often changed for cleanliness, and at 
each change the wounds were gently sponged, and it 
was here I was astounded for Dr. Vandyke told me that 
when he left him his wounds were running "good mat- 
ter." Well, on this oil cloth there was about one-half 
pint of the most offensive pus that I had ever beheld, 
and of course I felt he was worse for this could not be 
called "good matter." My fears were not fully allayed 
until I had a long talk with him and he assured me that 
he was improving. 

I kept my bed all the day following and matured plans 
for sending him to Texas as soon as he should be able 
to go, and when night as:ain came and all was still I left 
as I had entered and outside in the dark I put on my 
clothes over the hospital shirt and drawers and had 
much less difficulty in evading the guards. I found the 
people sound asleep, but got my horse and saddle and 
rode some four or five miles out and on the backside of 
a farm I fed my horse and slept until the sun was up in 
the sky on the following day, My route lay much the 
same on my way back as the way I went but had slept 


too long to make the trip in one day, but early on the 
second day I rode into camp, and performed some extra 
duty for being absent without leave. 

Slowly the Yanks retired and became less vigilant in 
their guard and one by one the wounded at Clinton 
were either removed or had died, until only one doctor 
was left in charge, and no guard, and as the nurses 
were noncombatants I had less difficulties each time I 
repeated the visits, and late in the fall, before he could 
sit up but a little while, I put him on my horse one 
evening late and carried him away. We got out a mile 
or two and in a woodland encamped for the night. 
Next morning we moved on and would rest and let him 
sleep, then move again, and during the day managed to 
get him to a house eight or ten miles north of Clinton, 
when I got the people to promise to care for him, and I 
left him and returned to camp. He was now much 
nearer camp and I could visit him often, and in a few 
weeks he was again in camp. 

While in camp he relapsed and was confined to his 
room all winter, but early in the following spring he was 
able to go with some furloughed men to Texas and I 
felt gratified that he again did see our mother. 


Chapter XXXI. 


Company I, of the Ninth Texas Cavalry, as has been 
told you, had a few boys that would take a little intoxi- 
cants whenever and wherever they could find it, and it 
had to be very scarce if they did not find it. So it was 
nothing unusual for us to have one or two of those 
happy spirits to entertain in camp on the march, and, 
in short, in any country where whiskey was to be had, 
we were liable to have a drunk man at any hour, on our 
hands for entertainment. We usually had a man espe- 
cially appointed to do the host known as the Guard 
"Provo," and he usually had appointments for the pur- 
pose known as the "guard house" and as such en- 
tertainments were strictly secluded, all soldiers had an 
aversion to receiving an invitation to attend the fes- 
tivities held by that officer in his special quarters, and 
as a consequence, the effects of the beverage were al- 
ways kept hidden as long as there was a possibility of 
escaping punishment. 

But I want to here write that if the reader has no ex- 
perience that a spirit that was in those days distilled 
from the seeds of "sorghum" had a capacity for reach- 
ing further and striking harder, and hitting its victims 
in more different ways than any intoxicant ever before 
known. So it was, when we knew a man of a known 
nature, acting the reverse an explanation would be 
fully made with the word "sorghum seed." When the 
profane man was prayerful and when the gambler was 
heard singing a hymn, we at once thought "sorghum 


seed." When the stingy man was liberal and the proud 
man was social, some one would say "sorghum seed." 
When our officers grew kind and extended sympathy, 
and sweet women throwed us kisses from the palatial 
residences that we were passing, all would think "sor- 
ghum seed," and so universal did the word become 
known as a synonym of drunk, crazy, deciet, that it put 
a quietus on all lofty thoughts and plans, and was con- 
sidered a denial or the opposite, for any act or expres- 
sion, and any truth was known as no "sorghum seed." 

On one occasion a young soldier that had taken a 
little taste of something and (of course hoped to keep 
the matter hid) was expostulating with the man who 
cut the beef for the companies and gave that dignified 
gentleman his views on cutting up the beef and spoke it 
as though his experience and knowledge had extended 
through years of cutting of beef for soldiers. "Yes, 
said he." I always cut my beef "so and so" and issued 
it to sergeant of companies "so and so" and I can in- 
form you that my methods were always satisfactory and 
my beeves fed more men to the number of pounds and 
did it more successfully than did those in the same army 
who did their work in the awkward and bungling ways 
that you now are following. The astonished butcher 
now laid down his cleaver and asked: "Do you know 
anything about it?" "Did you ever butcher for an 
army?" If so, in what war? 

"Of course I do." And have butchered for one of the 
grandest armies that ever shouldered arms, and whose 
valor was never questioned and whose blood poured as 
freely as the fountain of the Aleganies — in what war! 
interrupted the butcher excited and breathless. Why it 
was in the! in the! ! in the "Trajion war" and that's no 
sorgum seed either stoutly and earnestly claimed the 
soldier. No, no, there is no "sorgum seed" in that 
chimed in the crowd of hearers with a roar of laughter 
that fact can be established by our "Pro Vo" upon 
which that officer called our Trajion Butcher to one side 


for a conference against the protest of those who had 
been listening. 

"Old Butch" as we always called him maintained 
throughout the war that there was no "sorghum seed" 
either in him or his statement, but at some of our recent 
reunions it has been hinted that his messmates at that 
time did really suspect "sorghum seed" and since the 
war, upon cool and mature thought, still maintain that 
his statements were undoubtedly based on "sorghum 


Chapter XXXII. 


Old Butch tells his story. It was when we were dis- 
mounted and marching that the Artillery would often 
pass us with men riding on horseback, men riding on 
the horses that drew the guns, men riding on the horses 
that followed with the Caisons, two men riding on the 
limber chests and four men riding on the Caisons, all 
looked happy and I come to the conclusion that I would 
rather serve a soldier in a battery as then I would get to 
ride. I did hate to walk, it so happened that at the bat- 
tle of Hatchie Bridge, after we had crossed back over 
the bridge, our battery was planted on the hill and a 
sharp Artillery duel was going on. While we lay in line 
to support it the men who served the guns were exposed 
to a telling fire and soon the Artillery company had suf- 
fered such a loss that more men were required to fill the 
places of those that had been killed or disabled. An 
officer of the Battery rode down to our brigade line and 
asked for some men to help them to work the guns. 
This I thought was my time to get an easy position 
where I could ride. I knew the fighting was heavy but 
I did not care for the fighting so that I could get to ride. 

Our officers called for volunteers and I walked out, 
reversed my gun and stuck the bayonet into the ground 

and reported for duty. They put me at No and 

showed me what to do, carry ammunition, grape and 
canister to the gun. I knew nothing of the drill and 
was as awkward as a raw recruit. After firing a few 
rounds from the position the guns limbered up and 

¥he great war. 26i 

moved, leaving me with a charge between the chest and 
gun. I did not have a chance to get on and when they 
all moved off I had to run after them and carry the 
charge only a short distance until the gun was again 
planted and we gave them a few rounds, which kept me 
on the run, when just as I delivered the charge the man 

No that rammed the charge fell, and I gathered the 

ramrod and sent the charge home or rammed it down. 
It was discharged and again after several shots were 
fired that I rammed the gun was limbered up and gone, 
leaving me with the ramrod to run after it. The jolt 
from the discharges had deafened me and my nose was 
bleeding in a stream. My head was aching and the gun 
was leaving me with the rammer. As soon as the gun 
was stopped I ran up and a gunner showed me where to 
place the rammer in its rack, and I went to the branch 
near by for water. Good Lord, I was hot and did not 
want any more Artillery service for my experience that 
evening was a lot of hard work and no place to ride. 
The Artillery moved off while I was vainly trying to 
stop the blood from my nostrils, but I did not care, for 
I was fully disgusted with the Artillery branch of the 

After I got the blood stopped and was cool and felt 
able to travel the army was all gone. I was neither 
Artillery nor Infantry, but was a straggler and was with 
a lot of other stragglers, and followed on. The rear 
guard was still fighting and holding the enemy in check 
and officers were urging the stragglers along with all 
the encouragement and threats that the language fur- 
nishes. But I straggled along. I want to here say that 
all of the military starch is knocked out of a soldier 
when he straggles. Yes! and a straggler looks bad but 
he feels worse. No citizen can realize how bad a strag- 
gler feels, but in order to convey you some idea of how 
he feels you may take him as he looks and multiply that 
by about 400 and you will then have a slight conception 
of an army straggler. Low down, cowardly, mean, 


shirk, not worthy of the name of a man, much less a 
soldier. That is the kind of a crowd I felt to be in, so I 
just quit it. 

I turned off the road and wandered in an oblique di- 
rection hunting for something to eat, which I knew I 
could not find until about dark. I met with Gilbert, my 
messmate. He gave me a part of what he had and we 
then traveled to overtake the brigade. It was getting 
late at night and after walking several miles we came 
upon a fire, around which lay some half dozen soldiers, 
all of them appearantly asleep, and we saw that they 
had potatoes in the fire roasting. We squatted down 
and began rolling them out and as Gilbert rolled them 
out I put them into our haversacks. One fellow on the 
opposite side of the fire raised up and rubbing his eyes 
asked: "Boys, is your taters done yit?" Gilbert an- 
swered "No!" upon which he again sunk down to 
sleep, and we continued rolling the potatoes as long as 
we could find any. Then we very deliberately walked 
off. We had got about twenty steps off when this sleeping 
friend raised up to a sitting posture and saw that the 
potatoes were gone. I wish you could have seen him as 
I did when I looked back. His face the picture of an 
amazement and fear a sense of loss and horror about 
evenly distributed is the best I could make of it, as he 

called Boys ! Boys ! ! Boys ! ! ! did you see them 

d thieving rascals come and git all of our taters and 

walk off before our eyes. We were off in the dark too 
far to see them when the corps gave vent to their feel- 
ings in expressions really unkind towards us. I will not 
repeat them, but I suppose this is about the average act 
of stragglers. On the following morning we were in 
our own camps and answered "here" when the sar- 
geant called our names, but I will here say that my 
head felt as though it might resemble an empty nail keg. 


Chapter XXXIII. 


It was in the latter part of 1863. — We were encamped 
at a school house, between Big- Black and Yazoo rivers. 
All of the people had moved out, as there was fighting 
almost every day among the scouts, and the people who 
had lived there were all gone, we knew not where. 
Seldom a night was passed without some disturbance, 
and our orders were to keep a close watch, for the 
enemy were scouting near our camp, which was back 
between the rivers. While out on post two videtts some 
400 or 500 yards in advance of the relief company, in 
the night heard some one coming towards the post, they 
whispered to each other and made ready to give and 
receive the usual shots that were so often exchanged 
from that post. Slowly the form advanced to within 50 
yards, another whisper between the guards, then on it 
came to within 25 yards. A strange looking object to 
be prowling in the night. The sharp click of two car- 
bines was the signal of readiness, but before the fire 
was discharged one of the guards called out, "Halt," in 
the still night, the object came to a stand but never 
changed its form sufficient to determine what it was. It 
looked too large and too low for an enemy, but still it 
stood with two guns held upon it. "Who comes there" 
asked the guard? "It is me and major," squeaked the 
small voice of a child ! Well come here and tell us what 
you want, said the guard, upon which the object came 
forward and set down a box at the roadside and when 
asked what it was, answered "It is my little brother," 


The boy looked to be ten or twelve years old, and we 
learned from him that his baby brother had died after a 
long sickness, and he, with his mother, lived seven 
miles from the school house and they wanted to bury 
the baby in the grave yard there, and as it was too far 
for his mother to come with him, they had placed the 
baby in the light pine box and he had placed it upon his 
shoulder that morning to carry it to the burial ground 
and it was so unhandy that he got along so slow that he 
was belated into the night. Poor little boy, tired and 
wornout, without food, he had brought that box from 
home to bury it, seven miles. His father was gone to 
war and they had no horses or wagon. The only living 
animal they possessed was a big trusty dog named 
"Major," who walked by the boy's side and looked into 
his face with as much concern as though to say I too, 
am in the affair. 

The boy was told that he would have to stay with the 
guard until relief came and then he would be taken back 
to camp and that our captain would tell him what he 
should do, his only regret was that mother would not 
understand and would be uneasy till he got back home, 
he moved his box a little back to one side of the road 
and, he and the dog lay down by it and the boy was soon 
sleeping that sweet sleep that none but tired boys enjoy, 
the dog, too, appeared to sleep almost as soundly as the 
boy, while those soldiers stood watch and thought over 
the sufferings of this cruel war, which claimed even little 
white headed innocent boys as victims of its cruelty. 

Relief finally came and when those two guards went 
back to the reserve one of them carried the box in front 
of him and the other had the boy up behind him and the 
dog followed and looked up at the procession as if 
wondering why arrangements were not also made for 
him to ride. 

When in camp he with his charge was duely present- 
ed to the sergeant on duty and was given some meat and 
bread and a blanket to sleep upon, which he kindly 


divided with his dog and all sought sleep. Early next 
morning Capt. Hayns made a detail who soon made a 
little grave and the body was there buried after which 
the boy and dog were dismissed and told to go home and 
stay with his mother, which he did, carrying many little 
gifts from the soldiers— do not know his name. 


Chapter XXXIV. 


It is but a short step from the sublime to the redicu- 
lous, and that step was often taken, and strange, but 
true it is, that memory retains things best when pre- 
sented to the mind in contrast. The Holy Scriptures 
teach U3 of Heaven and Hell, the greatest possible con- 
trast, and I hope the reader will excuse the little story 
that is here recorded. While in the State of Georgia, 
our Chaplain was named Ische. He was a very devoted 
and good man, and his services were always marked 
with the devotion which always delineated the mortal to 
the immortal. I mean he was a man in body and his 
devotions w T ere to God in spirit. 

He usually selected some shady grove near the camp, 
and if it were possible he called us to prayers with him 
in the grove every Sunday, and when on the march, 
after we were in line each morning he always prayed 
for us, and if Sunday was a day of rest he always had 
preaching and as he passed along through the camp he 
would find the boys playing cards, chuckaluck, or some 
game like unto them, which was usually on a blanket 
spread down on the ground for a table and all the play- 
ers sat around on the ground while playing, he would 
sometimes stop and look on a moment until the seven 
was out or the throw made, when he would say: "Come 
on now, we are going to preaching," and such was our 
great love foF this good man that we all went with him. 
He would teach us as none but God's chosen can teach, 
and stroye to impress us that "God" was the "God" of 


individuals and the "God" of nations and that all 
things in war or peace, would work together for the 
good of all that would love and trust in "Jesus Christ," 
and I will just here say that such an hope was all the 
light we had in those dark hours of war. "Thank God 
for Hope." 

Well, I was going to tell you the rediculous that 
called this good parson to my mind this morning. 

In one of his services he had occasion to speek of the 
loaves and the fishes with which Jesus fed the great 
multitude and his congregation were very attentive as 
they sat on the ground or leaned against the trees. All 
appeared to go with the speaker back to the shores of 
Galilee and to stand with him to witness the great mir- 
ich with that multitude when just afc this time a soldier, 
some distance from the speaker, so much carried away, 
hollowed out "Bully for Christ," I wish we had him for 
our commissary." A glance at the soldier told of his 
earnestness. There was no effort at wit or sacreleges, 
but his long gaunt face and his long hands told us too 
plainly that like that multitude he, too, was enhungered. 
This rude appearing speech never appeared to disturb 
him. A mere glance at the soldier filled his heart with 
an earnest pity that shone from his face and his words 
like a gentle mantle, soon covered our sufferings and lit 
the light of hope and our hearts felt thankful, and today 
when we write and our mind goes back to record the 
ridiculous scene we realize that there is nothing com- 
mon or unclean that He has prepared for us, and while 
the young will realize the ridiculous there are those 
whose hairs are gray that will read with moist eyes 
while the mind again will live in the past, and witness 
that congregation and its surroundings. 

Parson Ische was a small man in body, fair skin and 
blue eyes, which were large and earnest, square mouth 
and quick spoken. He was always ready to fight or to 
pray. He lived up close to God and died in his service. 

He was killed by a federal soldier while on his knees 


administering to a wounded companion near Newnan in 
the state of Georgia, and God has erected a monument 
of love and sweet memories over his earthly remains 
that reaches from earth to heaven in the hearts of those 
who knew him, "For their good words do follow them" 
but to the world he rests in an unmarked trench filled 
with Confederate dead east of Newnan and near John- 
ston's old mill, five miles from that town in the state of 
Georgia. May peace, sweet peace reign in the hearts of 
those who tread over his clay, was the teachings of 
Parson Ische. 


The complications of battle lines are so varied, and 
complications too intricate for one tc attempt to describe 
that I will not attempt to describe any po- 
sition of the constantly changing fronts of the 
two contending armies while we sojourned in Georgia, 
during the season of 1864, but will say that our front 
was upon an average about twenty miles long from ex- 
treme left to right and was constantly undergoing 
changes in curves and angles of varied degrees, to suit 
the grounds in greatest vantage, to-day the line was 
measurably straight, to-morrow it might front only apart 
of the line while the remainder would front on a different 
angle, so it was the infantry were in trenches in lines not 
always exact parallels but close proximity in some parts 
and more distant at other places, like two great serpants 
they lay, always on the move yet never moving for the 
lines could be seen at good distance for each line was 
well marked by its embankment of red clay, each night 
was a season in which each contending general strove 
to gain some advantage and each morning showed some 
new earthworks. General Sherman's tactics was to 
flank us from our position and avoided to great extent 
a battle, and his movements were mostly on our flanks 
and fronts were almost daily changing, and when a line 


varied and fell out of sight a line of skirmishers was sent 
out to find them and when they were found the guns 
told where they were located and a command was then 
advanced and fought them a sufficient time for our offi- 
cers to determine their strength and position, this was 
termed developing the enemy, this part usually fell to 
the cavalry service and most of the men we lost while in 
Georgia, was developing the position and strength of the 

It was about the first week in August, 1864, that near 
Atlanta, Georgia, on our left, the lines of the enemy 
very suddenly gave way and our command was ad- 
vanced and were cautious by feeling their way against 
a line of skirmishers who were stubbornly disputing our 
advance. We were in a rough woodland and our 
skirmishers were three or four hundred yards in ad- 
vance. When by a rouse a Yankee cavalry officer at- 
tempted to capture one of our brigade, a member of 
Company A, Ninth Texas Cavalry. Quint Boothe was 
his name and he was skirmishing with the enemy in his 
front and about the time he had emptied his postol. The 
officer showed himself from his hiding place in some 
bushes near by and spurring his horse made directly for 
Boothe, who upon seeing him so close upon him, spurred 
his steed to meet him and on attempting to shoot dis- 
covered that his pistol was empty. Just before the 
horses met Boothe threw his pistol at his foe, who in 
turn shot the horse that Boothe was riding, a dead shot, 
and again raised his arm to shoot. Boothe's horse fell 
forward and as the horse fell, Boothe gathered his ad- 
versary in his arms and pulled him from his saddle and 
both fell to the ground, the Yankee rather on top and a 
life and death struggle ensued. They were both tall, 
well made men of average make-up. Boothe the 
taller, but the Yankee the heavier. Boothe from his 
great length succeeded in turning himself on top, but 
on turning he threw his leg over with great force and 
struck it against a sharp rock that projected from the 


ground just inside the right knee cutting a fearful gash 
causing that member to become painfully helpless. Once 
on top he gathered his man by the throat and soon had 
himlimp a prisoner while Boothe held his pistol wrenched 
from his hand to his head and told him that he was 
wounded, to assist him to mount upon the living horse 
and walk before or he would kill him. The Yankee 
chose to assist his captor to the saddle and Boothe pale 
and bleeding marched his prisoner into our lines, riding 
the prisoner's horse and guarding him with his own pis- 

Boothe's leg was always afterwards stiff and as he 
was disabled he was placed in charge of our Ordnance 
wagon for the remainder of the war. 


Chapter XXXV. 

This writer visited "Old Buteh" for the purpose of 
filling out some things that happened while he was ab- 
sent from the command. He found the old man hale 
and having a good time, and as jovial as a boy of twen- 
ty, and after we had supper, on being informed of the 
object of the visit "Old Butch" said yes, I remember 
pretty well most of the events, but have great difficulty 
in fixing of dates, but I can't write for you, for there is 
too much of it, for it is a bigger task than I will under- 
take at my age and then when you get the material for 
our book, and it is placed in the hands of your commit- 
tee, they will glean out the best stories and sell them to 
some magazine and they will publish them as stories, 
which I fear will be the last of your book of memories 
by old soldiers, but the writer not to be put out by these 
fancied objections called upon "Dollie," his youngest 
daughter (ten years old) who furnished her "school 
tablet" and he jotted down the following: 

"As you remember, we were dismounted at Des Arc 
on White river, and took a boat for Memphis, where we 
camped for four or five days, where we learned that 
island No. 10 had fallen into the hands of the en- 
emy and that the battle of Shiloa had been fought. 
From Menphis we took the cars for Corinth, and first 
went into camp on the west side of the town and while 
there spent the time at Picket and scout duty. We had 
a great deal of sickness. I think the Ross Brigade was 
all in the same division and my recollection is that Gen. 
Hogg was in command, but at that time my knowledge 
of military affairs extended but little passed the regi- 


mental limits (and I cared fully as little about them as I 
knew) but it was here that we went into an election of 
officers on reorganization. 

Major Towne was elected Colonel of the Ninth Texas 
Cavalry "dismounted." 

D. W. Jones, Lieutenant Colonel, Dodson, Major and 
John Adkins, Adjutant, and in our Company "I" Ninth 
Texas Cavalry "dismounted. " Perry Evans was elected 
Captain, Buster Haynes, First Lieutenant; Henry 
Haynes, Second Lieutenant, and John A. Coplin, Third 
Lieutenant. Our camp was then moved out on the east 
of Corinth and we had some scouting and skirmishing 
at intervals all along. "Yes, I saw Gen. Beauregard 
quite often, but dot not recollect of hearing his voice in 
conversation, but he was always neatly dressed and 
presented quite a military appearance. Any one would 
know him as an officer of high rank." 

While east of Corinth there was some Artillery fight- 
ing and we often were called into line to support the 
battery while engaged, and it was in a fight of this kind 
on Chambers Creek, that our Colonel was wounded in a 
very singular way. We were in line to the rear and 
supporting the battery that was engaging a battery of 
the enemy at good long range. Shells were bursting in 
the air and we were discussing their skill in gunnery, 
etc, when a shell struck the trunnion of one of our 
pieces knocking off the trunnion and dismounting the 
piece, the shell bursting and killing two or three men 
around the gun and the fragments striking in our line, 
one piece striking a tree, another striking a soldier, as 
he lay on the ground in the forehead and taking off all 
the top of his head. Still another piece of the shell 
struck the gun of one of the soldiers which was at his 
side lying on the ground causing it to discharge its load 

into the leg of Col. Towne, a fearful wound thus inflict- 
ed near the knee joint and our Colonel thus disabled, 
was taken from U9 and never again joined his Regiment. 


Colonel Jones was thus placed in command of the Ninth 
Texas Cavalry. 

Our armies retreated from Corinth in a short time af- 
ter this without a general engagement. The enemy- 
threw up some rockets for signals on the night of the 
evacuation which were seen by the whole army, and 
were both curious and beautiful. We retreated to Tu- 
pilo and my recollection is that our Brigade was com- 
manded on that retreat by Colonel Stone of the Sixth 
Texas. "It was on this retreat that we impaled the pig 
on the bayonet." "Old Jack" was with me and we 
wanted some meat but we had orders not to discharge a 
gun and the problem was how to get a hog without 
shooting, but we had fallen out of ranks and were 
stragling behind and had found a bunch of pigs and 
were driving them along to a place where we could cap- 
ture one without noise, and had them in a lane and a 
log lay parallel with the fence and "Old Jack" was 
stationed at the end of the log with fixed bayonet and 
the pigs were between the fence and the log, when to 
our dismay Colonel Earl rode up and ordered us to 
"move on." "We don't belong to your command an- 
swered "Old Jack." Move on or I will have you ar- 
rested, shouted Colonel Earl, and as things looked se- 
rious I hurried the pigs and "Old Jack" impaled one on 
his bayonet, and shouldering his gun with the pig fast 
on the bayonet, we marched out at quick time. 

Our first stop was at "Tupilo," where we stayed only 
a short time, then we were moved to Moorsville, where 
we were encamped till late summer. It was here we 
got our soldiers' schooling. Two Regiments, the Sixth 
and Ninth, were placed under Major Fifer, and the 
other two, Third and Legion, under Gen. Hebert. A 
movement, I think was for the purpose of separating as 
the four Regiments were too bad to use as soldiers when 
they were all together. Major Fifer was an old West 
Pointer and we thought a hard citizen, but in truth a 
fine officer, whose knowledge and services we still ap- 


predate, for he was surely a great man and well. fitted 
for the purpose of making soldiers out of wild Texas 
boys, no small job you can be assured. We hated him 
to start on for no other reason than that he was a soldier 
and methodically correct in all of his commands and 

An order was issued and duly read on dress parade 
that Major Fifer would take command and was to be 
respected and obeyed a Brigadier-General and he with 
untiring energy commenced the labors of drilling four 
hours every day. He worried with us, he stormed at 
us, he cursed at us, he put us to severest tests, he pun- 
ished us, and was finally rewarded by pronouncing us 
the best and most efficient Brigade of the army, and 
from the hatred expressed at the start, a warmth deeper 
than respect still remains with us that in our old age we 
feel a love for Gen. Fifer. In order to illustrate some 
of his labors, will tell of a circumstance that occurred 
with his raw Texians. He had a guard mounted and 
one post was at the creek where we got our using water 
and he, to try his guard, attempted to ride into the 
water. The guard was sitting down on a log when he 
rode up, the guard commanded him to "halt," raising 
his gun and informed him that he could not ride into the 
water. The general appeared to be very wrath and 
asked the guard by whose orders he presumed to halt 
his commanding officer, the guard answered that he did 
not know whose orders it was, but he supposed it was 
"Old Fifer" or some other d — d old galoots and I'll kill 
yer if yer go in thar. 

Many laughable jokes are still told of Gen. Fifer, and 
not a few speak of his bravery as shown on the fields of 

From Marsville we went back to Tupilo, then to Iuka, 
but we did not all get into the fight at that place. Only 
a part of the Ninth and Sixth, but all the Third and Le- 
gion were engaged. We, of the Ninth, were on reserve 
and a few shells fell among us, lost but few. We rested 


on the field at luka that night, and next morning was 
rear guard for Prices' army corp to Bay Springs, where 
we stayed several days, and from there we went to Rip- 
ley, then to Corinth. On the night before the engage- 
ment at Corinth, we camped at Hatchie river and moved 
up to Corinth, and as the day progressed the engage- 
ment became general, and the fighting was hot and 
heavy all day. In the evening we ate our snack in line. 
I had captured a haversack that contained a large piece 
of raw bacon and cut it in two slices while lying on the 
ground, and gave each comrade a slice among the rest. 
Lieutenant Buster Haynes asked for a slice, which had 
to be thrown to him, but he got it and ate it only a few 
minutes before he was killed. He was shot through the 
heart, and only said, "Boys, I am wounded." He was 
taken a little back and placed beside a log, but was 
dead. We lost many men on that evening and lay on 
our arms all night. I was detailed from the company 
that night to go to the Ordnance wagon for ammunition 
and started for the wagon some distance in the rear, but 
soon found that I could a supply on the field by using 
the cartridge boxes of the dead and from that source 
supplied the needed ammunition of all calibres used. 
Early next morning we were moved to the left and soon 
joined into a general engagement and rapidly advanced 
upon their works on the left of where I was. I saw our 
men scale the works and I got to the bar pits, but we 
could not cross the works in front of where I was, for it 
would have taken ladders, but the Sixth Texas suc- 
ceeded in getting into the works to our left. Our adju- 
tant fell, Capt. Ross of the Sixth fell wounded, and all 
of our field officers lost their horses, except Col. L. I. 
Ross, who rode out. From the works we were repulsed 
and come out in disorder, but were soon reformed and 
marched at a double-quick to Hatchie Bridge, some six 
miles away, and crossed the river under a hot fire and 
it was here that a grape shot struck my gun and cut one 
barrel in two and knocked me back, I believe, thirty 


feet. It deadened my arms and hurt my head and 
breast so bad that I could not get upon my feet. I 
could not crawl and I just had to wiggle behind the 
horse that stood near by. I lay there and kicked and 
grinned until I happened to see the army moving back 
on a double-quick in bad order. I saw the Sixth Texas 
flag fall and captured the only flag that was ever lost by 
our brigade. They were all running towards a bend in 
the river, just then a man on a horse ran by me and I 
happened to think that it was time for me to run. I 
jumped up and got my piece of a gun and flew. "You 
did not bring that piece of a gun did you?" Yes, you 
better believe I did, I'll tell you a soldier sticks to his 
gun, he can't leave it, I saw it tried that morning by 
Captain Evans. He carried a gun at Corinth, and 
when we ran out I saw him try to throw it down, but he 
could not, until we got clear out, then he succeeded in 
throwing it down and drew his saber to form his compa- 
ny. I ran with the man on horseback to where I saw 
them jump into the river. Then we turned and ran for 
the bridge. We were about even till we started down 
the bank when I got the start of him and beat him 
across, about a neck ahead. We got over on the hill 
and formed to support the battery, (Bledsaw battery) 
and the fire of the enemy was so severe that the battery 
had to have some recruits from the Ninth Texas Regi- 
ment. I volunteered to serve it, and while there, 
learned some battery sense that I have not yet forgot. 
While I was serving the battery the command moved 
off to the mill and crossed the river, and in attempting 
to get with my command I fell in with the advance of 
the enemy and asked for something to eat I was told 
that they had nothing to eat but powder, and as I had 
partaken of a sufficiency of that article I stepped to one 
side and quickened speed and finally come upon some 
of our stragglers. 

Back to Ripley and to Lumkin's Mill, where a part of 
the boys were mounted,! believe the Third Texas. Then 


we went to Abbieville and did police duty, then to Ox- 
ford and to Coffeeville hard pressed. I was not at Oak- 
land, but at Grenada we got our horses, and there is 
where I met you, and after that you recollect what hap- 
pened as well as I do, for you know that after we got 
our horses that was the first duty of any note that we 
did. Will say only this, that at Holly Springs I got my 
horse shot and when the bullet hit him in the charge he 
jumped as high as this ceiling and fell with me in the 
road and I fully believe that fifty horses at least ran 
over me before I could roll into the ditch, but none of 
them hurt me and I jumped up and ran back to some 
stables where I had noticed some horses and selected me 
a mule and a good saddle, and while at this I saw a 
Yankee crouched in one of the stalls and as I ordered 
him out I saw another, and heard something above and 
called out to those above to come out, as I was going to 
fire the hay. Eight prisoners were the result. 

Here "Old Butch" lost the thread of his discourse 
and fell to telling of the intelligence and fleetness of the 
mule he got and of her pride while arrayed among cav- 
alry horses — and her only a mule — when the old clock 
struck eleven and we separated for the evening. 


Chapter XXXVI. 


During these latter days, when the fate of the Con- 
federacy was trembling in the balance, and Titans 
grappled for the possession of the "Gate City," the 
scene shifts so frequently that the camera fails to retain 
an impression. The visit of President Davis; the removal 
of General Johnston ; the placing of General Hood in 
command of the army, are events yet remembered. 
Then came Sherman's erratic move to the rear, which 
sealed the fate of Atlanta. In all these rapid move- 
ments Ross* Brigade bore its banner with honor, and 
signalized its prowess on twenty of the bloodiest fields 
of the tragic drama. 

it was theirs to lead the Confederate advance; theirs 
to participate, as infantry, in the stubborn fight, and 
theirs, finally, to cover the gloomy retreat. While the 
infantry were enjoying short respites of repose in camp, 
from their arduous duties in the field, Ross' men formed 
a cordon of safety between them and the enemy — where 
sleepless vigilance was the price of security. No his- 
torian will ever recount the many acts of individual he- 
roism performed in the wild mountain passes of North 
Georgia by the Texas scout; no record will ever keep 
for admiring posterity the midnight attack and repulse. 
The future will but know the general legend, that Ross 
and his braves were tried by ordeals that taxed to their 
utmost the highest qualities of our nature, and that they 
came forth from the fiery saturnalia of demoniac war as 
gold purified from the crucible. True to every trust, 


their sublime devotion wavered not, nor did their heroic 
exertions relax even when the hand of Fate had written 
the Confederacy's epitath above the hopes of its people, 
and craven manhood deserted the colors of their alle- 
giance, and sought ignoble security behind the devas- 
tating lines of the enemy. The last rally of the bugle 
found them as ready to mount as did the first, when 
cheered by the smiles of wives and sweethearts in far 
distant Texas. 

It is not our province to follow the rapid moves of the 
columns on this gigantic field of war. Sherman com- 
menced his "march to the sea," and Hood set out for 
Nashville. General Ross was ordered with his brigade 
to take the advance, and to proceed to the vicinity of 
Decatur and Tuscumbia, Ala. This march was per- 
formed quietly enough, as no enemy at all was encount- 
ered. At Decatur, General Ross awaited the arrival of 
General Hood, who, with the main army, arrived in a 
few days, and went into camp, remaining there nearly a 
week, to allow rest and refreshment to the tired men. 
During the halt, however, activity reigned in the com- 
missary and ordnance departments; and the necessary 
ammunition and provisions were gotten ready for the 
purposed campaign. Again, Ross was ordered to take 
the advance. The Tennessee river was crossed, and the 
column headed for Nashville. At the Tennessee river 
the enemy's cavalry was encountered; but, after several 
spirited engagements, General Ross drove them from 
his front. The march was necessarily slow and tedious. 
The cavalry of the enemy was re- enforced by over- 
whelming numbers, and, no sooner had Ross driven a 
body from his front, than he was attacked by a fresh 
contingent, which arduous service told heavily on men 
and horses. Even the night brought but little relief, 
for both General and men were in arms during the en- 
tire night. Thus Ross led the advance into Tennessee, 
literally cutting a pathway through the multitudinous 
enemy for the march of Hood's army. A few miles 


south of Pulaski, Term., a large force was descried 
drawn up in line of battle, and occupying a very advan- 
tageous position. Ross did not hesitate a moment, but 
commenced preparations to attack, though it was evi- 
dent that they out-numbered the Texans in the ratio of 
ten to one. The Legion was deployed to the left; the 
Ninth to the right, and the Third and Sixth advanced as 
the center. All thought a hotly contested engagement 
was imminent. But, after some heavy skirmishing, the 
enemy, evidently thinking discretion the better part of 
valor, left the field precipitately, and fell back on Pu- 
laski. At this place, General Ross discovered the en- 
emy posted in force, and so dispatched General Hood, 
in the meantime, however, annoying the Federals with 
his skirmishers and sharpshooters. Hood came up with 
the army, and directed Ross to turn the left flank of the 
enemy, and gain his rear. Seeing Ross in the execution 
of this movement, the enemy abandoned his position, 
and once more retired in the direction of Nashville, to 
which point all the clouds of war seemed now converg- 
ing for the coming storm. Ross pursued the retreating 
Federals; and, from Pulaski to Columbia, scarce a mo- 
ment passed that the eager Texans were not on their 
heels. In this pursuit many prisoners were taken, and 
some wagons. At Columbia it was understood that the 
enemy would give battle. Cheatham's Division had 
been sent lower down the river to cross, so as to gain 
she enemy's rear. Arriving in front of Columbia, Gen- 
eral Hood directed General Ross to cross Duck river 
some miles above the city, and gain the enemy's rear — 
a move he executed with neatness and dispatch, taking 
position on the pike between Spring Hill and Franklin. 
General Ross at once dismounted his men, and attacked 
the enemy in his front (Federal rear) with vigor. Sim- 
ultaneously with the report of Ross' guns, General S. D. 
Lee attacked the enemy in Columbia. It evidently was 
Hood's design that Cheatham should have re-enforced 
Ross' Brigade with his division of infantry, and captur 


the army of Schofield at Columbia. Lee drove the en- 
emy into town; and Schofield bent his energies now to 
drive Ross from his rear — now become his front — that 
he could retire. All that day the unequal contest raged. 
The brave young hero was dismounted and at the head 
of his columns; and his clear, ringing voice was often 
heard above the din of conflict, encouraging his men to 
maintain the unequal grapple. Anxiously, but in vain, 
did Ross look for Cheatham. He felt that his skeleton 
brigade could not much longer stand up before the ter- 
rible odds pitted against it. The long hours seemed in- 
terminable in their weary course; and the guns of the 
enemy thundered their vomitings of iron hail into the 
decimated ranks of the Texans. The field of battle was 
the narrow turnpike, and the vast numbers of the enemy 
did not avail as they would on the open field. To the 
deafening volleys of the enemy's fifty guns, the unerr- 
ing rifles of the Texans defiantly replied. In vain did 
the Federal infantry charge the position time after time, 
as if to sweep, by mere w* ight of numbers and momen- 
tum, the audacious Texans from their path. But Ross, 
sword in hand, his faoe blackened with the smoke of 
battle, met them each time with a counter- charge, to 
retire, when the spasmodic death-grapple was over, sul- 
lenly to his old position. Ross appeared as personating 
the character of Leonidas in the pass of a western Ther- 
mopylae. Finally, the sun set as-if ashamed to witness 
the scene of slaughter. As the thunders of battle lulled 
temporarily, the groans of the wounded — piled on the 
narrow pike indiscriminately with the dead — were heard 
often begging in piteous accents for water. Ross learned 
from a citizen that General Cheatham was not more than 

a mile distant. Assuredly, then, the long and anxious- 
ly-expected re-enforcement will soon arrive. This hope 
imparts to the indomitable young chieftain new resolu- 
tion, and nerves his heart with determination to hold 
the pass at all hazards. He communicates the high and 
unselfish resolve to his men, and is answered by cheers 
of enthusiasm. They feel that they hold in their hands 



the key of the position ; and that the muse of history is 
contemplating their acts. They appreciate the mag- 
nitude of the trust reposed in them, and swear to be 
faithful at the price of life itself. 

Doubtless, General Hood imagined that it was the 
legions of Cheatham that were staying the progress of 
Schofield's divisions, and felt that the victory was in his 
grasp. And, if Cheatham had come, how different 
would have been the result. Hood did all that it was in 
the power of mortal man to do. His orders were dis- 
obeyed, and Napoleon himself would have failed, under 
similar circumstances. But the lull in the storm of bat- 
tle was only temporary. Again the enemy, with re- en- 
forcements drawn from the front of Lee, where the com- 
batants had ceased for the night, renewed the contest 
with redoubled efforts. He was struggling for existence, 
and desperation characterized his attempts to extricate 
himself from the enveloping lines of the determined 
Confederates. The darkness of the night was lit up by 
the lurid glare of a hundred cannon, and their thunders 
reverberating among the rocks and hills, sounded as if 
pandemcnium had settled upon the earth. Volley after 
volley of musketry rattled along the lines; the groans of 
the wounded; the piles of the dead; the shrieks of the 
combatants; formed a picture in the stygian darkness 
terrible and sublime! Charge after charge the enemy 
make on the Texan position ; but the indomitable Ross 
never failed to accept the gage, and always met them on 
halfway ground. Often the combatants were mixed in 
inextricable confusion, and friend could not be distin- 
guished from foe. Thus, throughout the entire night 
did the demoniacal conflict rage; but Ross held the pike ! 
With the morning's dawn the enemy ceased firing in 
front, and concentrated all his available force of infan- 
try, cavalry, and artillery opon the position held by 
Ross, who, by the mere force of numbers and the utter 
exhaustion of his men, retired sorrowfully form the pike 
that had witnessed his unparalleled defense. The 

tfHE GREAT WAR. 283 

Texans retired but a short distance from the field, and 
sought that repose so much needed, while the army of 
Schofield was pouring through the gap thus formed, 
and leading Hood on to the fatal field of Nashville. Had 
Cheatham re- enforced Ross on the pike, the campaign 
would have closed at Columbia in a glorious Confeder- 
ate victory. 

Having rested the greater portion of the day, the 
shades of evening found Ross and his men in the saddle. 
The enemy was retreating on Franklin; and being 
stretched along the single pike presented a tempting op- 
portunity to a daring leader to make reprisals — an op- 
portunity that Ross did not neglect. The night was 
spent by the Texas Brigade in making sudden attacks 
upon this line; and many prisoners, and wagons con- 
taining commissary and quartermaster stores, were cap- 
tured. The town of Franklin was well fortified, and, 

doubtless, General Schofieid imagined he would be al- 
lowed to remain here unmolested — a supposition not 
justified by the results, for General Hood, immediately 
upon his arrival, made preparation for an assault. Gen- 
eral Ross was dispatched to the right, and up BigHarp- 
eth river, which he crossed. The Texans were here en- 
countered by Brownlow's celebrated "Gray Horse," an 
excellent body of cavalry. The Ninth Texas was thrown 
forward as skirmishers; the General holding well in 
hand the Third, Sixth, and one battalion of the Legion, 
the remainder of that regiment having been left across 
the creek as a support. The enemy attacked the Ninth 
furiously; and, by force of numbers, drove them back. 
Ross, seeing the condition of affairs, placed himself at 
the head of his men and charged. The "Gray Horse'* 
met the onset gallantly by a counter- charge, and the 
two opposing lines absolutely passed through each other; 
probably an incident without parallel in the whole 


course of the war,* Many hand-to-hand fights ensued; 
and several of Ross' men were afterward mounted on 
gray horses captured in the fight. Especially worthy of 
mention was personal combat between a Federal non- 
commissioned officer and JVC. Pritchett, of Company E, 
Third Texas. Mr. Pritchett killed his man and captured 
his steed. Again the "Gray Horse" prepared for 
another charge. The liberty is taken to quote the lan- 
guage of Lieutenant B. T. Roberts, Company E, Third 
Texas, to whom the author is indebted for the incidents 
of the Tennessee campaign: "General Ross told his 
men to stand firm; that he was there to lead them. He 
called on the Ninth to rally on him, which was readily 
done. The enemy, in the meantime, were bearing down 
on our line furiously; when General Ross, standing 
straight in his stirrups, shouted * Forward!* and with 
drawn saber led the charge in person. At once the op- 
posing lines clashed, and for some time it seemed doubt- 
ful which would yield. Ross was ubiquitous, and seemed 
to bear a charmed life ; and was heard to exclaim at the 
crisis of the engagement, 'Boys, if you don't run, they 
will!' And they did. The Texans pursued Brownlow 
until the fugitives found refuge in night." 

While Ross was engaging the "Gray Horse," Hood 
was storming the ramparts of Franklin. Upon the re- 
treat of the enemy from Franklin, Ross was still kept to 
the right, and in advance, following the enemy to the 
very suburbs of Nashville. While General Hood was 

*In his desperate encounter with the "White Horse," 
Colonel Jones, of the Ninth, ran his sword through a 
Union trooper, and broke it off at the hilt, the blade re- 
maining in the body of his adversary. No one was more 
conspicuous for daring bravery, in this engagement, 
than Lieutenant W. J. Cavin, of company A, Third 
Texas Cavalry. Sergeant T. J. Cellum, in this engage- 
ment, slew in single combat a Union officer, who refused 
to surrender; himself receiving three pistol-shot wounds 
in the deadly duel. 


investing Nashville, General Ross was ordered to cut off 
re -enforcements to Thomas, expected from Murfrees- 
boro. This he did effectually, capturing stockades and 
stations between Nashville and Murfreesboro. The re- 
sult of this brief campaign was three hundred and fifty- 
prisoners, and an immense train loaded with commissary 
supplies — an invaluable acquisition to General Hood at 
the time. But General Hood's successes — dearly bought 
— were at an end. The disastrous battle of Nashville 
dissipated the hopes of an advance. Indeed, the issue 
now was the existence of his routed columns. Ross cov- 
ered the retreat, and hung on the rear of Hood's demor- 
alized army, a barrier to the eagerly-pursuing Federals. 
This, says Lieutenant Roberts, was the severest service 
experienced during the war. It being late in December, 
the weather was intensely cold — freezing all the time — 
the men were thinly clad, poorly fed, and dejected and 
disheartened. The Texans were called upon to repulse 
twenty charges of the enemy's cavalry a day. Nor did 
night relieve them of their arduous duties; for often 
they were compelled to stand in line of battle throughout 
the cold night. But Ross and his men were true to the 
trust reposed in them, and interposed, as a barrier be- 
tween the beaten army and its victorious enemy, until 
the Tennessee river was crossed, which ended the cam- 
paign, and virtually, the services of Ross' Texas Bri- 
gade. The author would say no more; but point to the 
record contained in this imperfect narrative of their ser- 


Through the kindness of Rev. John Hudson, of Hutto, 
Williamson county, Texas, the author was given access to 
the diary of his brother, Rev. Edward Hudson, who had 
been appointed by Colonel Griffith, Chaplain of the 
Sixth Regiment, Texas Cavalry. Mr. Hudson served 
some time as a private in Captain "Pete" Ross' com- 


pany, and bore all the dangers, privations, and hard- 
ships, incidental to that position, until promoted Chap- 
lain. In an engagemnt between JRoss' Brigade and the 
command of General McCook, in July, 1864, near Noo- 
nan, Ga., Chaplain Hudson, who accompanied his regi- 
ment into the engagement, discovered one of his acquaint- 
ances dangerously wounded. He called to a comrade to 
assist him in removing the wounded man to a place of 
safety. The two men dismounted, leaving their horses 
in care of a third, and immediately proceeded to succor 
their wounded friend. Having accomplished this hu- 
mane act, they returned for their horses, but discovered 
that the enemy had advanced considerably, and that 
their horses were gone. Chaplain Hudson, caught upon 
the field, the horse of a Union trooper, mounted him, 
and proceed in a line diagonally across the field in quest 
of the missing horses. He was fired upon by a body of 
the enemy, his horse killed, and himself dangerously 
wounded. In a recent letter to the author, Rev. John 
Hudson writes: "At his own request, General Ross had 
him carried to a private house, and there he remained 
until the close of the war. Levi Fowler remained with 
him, and finally brought him home. General Ross 
(although I never met him) and Levi Fowler occupy a 
very warm, sacred place in my heart, because of their kind 
humane, brotherly treatment of my dear brother. He 
remained but a short time near Waco ; received a suit of 
clothes and some money from the boys of his old reg- 
iment, as a token of their esteem, and went from there 
to Kemp, Kaufman county, and taught school four 
years. He resumed preaching soon after settling in 
Kaufman; but was compelled, in consequence of the 
results of his wounds, to occupy a sitting posture when- 
ever doing so; and he so continued to preach until his 
death, which occured August 17, 1877. He preachen a 
great deal; rode two years as a missonary in the bounds 
of the "Bacon Presbytery." But he was a great suf- 
ferer all the time. His health finally failing, I brought 


him to my home in Williamson county. He bore his 
affliction with great fortitude and resignation. His death 
was one of great peace and triumph ; not a dimming veil 
or cloud obscured his mental horizon." 

From Mr. Hudson's diary the following facts in re- 
gard to General Ross' campaign in Tennessee valley, in 
1863, are gained ; and for which the author is specially 
thankful, inasmuch as all his efforts, to obtain data, 
upon which to predicate a narrative of this brilliant 
campaign, have been unavailing. As little else than the 
dates, and briefest mention of movement, in a general 
way, are given the brief story of one of the most success- 
ful cavalry expeditions of the war must remain, for the 
present, at least, but partially told. But to the diary: 
"On September 26, 1863, the Sixth Texas Cavalry, and 
the First Mississippi Cavalry, left Richland, Mississippi, 
under the command of Colonel L. S. Ross. At Pontotoc 
the command was reviewed by General Joseph E. Johns- 
ton. Taking up the line of march again, the brigade 
passed Tupelo, the scene of our infantry encampment the 
previous summer. From this town, on the Mobile & 
Ohio Railroad, the brigade proceeded to Tuscumbia, 
Alabama, on the Tennessee river, where the Fifteenth 
(Union) Army Corps was stationed. General Ross imme- 
diately inaugurated a system of surprises, attacks, etc., 
that annoyed the enemy intolerably for the space of six 
days, during which period, night and day, the confused 
enemy knew not at what moment we would attack him, 
nor from what point of the compass the attacking party 
would come. Finally, the Union corps, though number- 
ing nearly ten thousand men, were forced to retire from 
the Memphis & Charleston Railroad, which it was their 
duty to hold, and leave it in the possession of their adver- 
sary who could not count over twelve hundred rifles. 
The enemy was forced to cross the Tennessee river at 
Eastport, and fall back upon Corinth; thus retarding 
their purposed re-enforcement of General Rosecranz's 
army which was operating against the army of General 


Bragg in East Tennessee. After considerable maneuver- 
ing, the brigade made a rapid dash on Moscow, were we 
had a very spirited fight with the enemy there posted ; 
thence back, via Holly Springs and Grenada, to 
Canton, where the remainder of the old brigade were 
encamped. We here parted with our comrades of the 
First Mississippi — than which no regiment was composed 
of more perfect gentlemen or brave soldiers. After this 
expedition, a feeling of comraderie always existed be- 
tween the Sixth Texas and the First Mississippi. Soon 
after the arrival of the Sixth Regiment, the brigade 
moved, in charge of a train of wagons loaded with arms 
and ammunition for the trans- Mississippi Department. 
Mention of which is made in its proper place in the nar- 

"While the brigade was encamped at Canton, many 
horses were afflicted with a malady somewhat resemb- 
ling "blind-staggers," which, in most instances, proved 
fatal. The general cause assigned, was grazing on a 
vegetable called "sneeze-weed," of all which the author 
is ignorant, save only the effects. 

Mr. J. Wylie Montgomery, of Company A, Third 
Texas Cavalry, and at present the efficient sheriff of 
Rains county, Texas, deserves special mention for his 
daring bravery in battle, and for his sagacity as a 
scout, in which peculiarly dangerous service he was 
long employed, and rendered services of incalculable 
value to the brigade and division commanders. He is 
deserving, in all respects, the confidence of his fellow- 


Chapter XXXVIL 


After the war, and back at home as I looked upon the 
old farm, everything bespoke poverty. My mother and 
sisters and sweetheart too as well as all others of my 
female acquaintances, were clothed in the coarsest kind 
of homespun. It is true they had ingeniously woven 
lints of different colors together so as to form rude 
flowers but it was so coarse, poor girls. Their shoes 
were of coarse half -tanned cowhide, hard and rough, or 
some wore shoes made of cloth with only a leather bot- 
tom, that they had made themselves on bad shaped 
lasts, that had been constructed by rude craftsmen who 
apparently had not a single idea of the outlines of a 
beautiful foot. 

Their hats were made of straw, coarse straw, but 
bleeched to snow whiteness and a very few had hats 
made of pasteboard and in an ingenious and painstak- 
ing method covered with the snowy down from the com- 
mon gander, and I will here say that one of the finest 
pieces of art that it has ever been my fortune to exam- 
ine was such a hat, but in this coarse harness they were 
still pretty, their eyes were just as bright, their smiles 
were just as sweet, their dimpled cheeks and panting 
lips just as expressive, as are those of her refined and 
fashionable sisters of today. 

Mother looked older and careworn and it took me 
several days in the study of her sweet face, to again 
locate that sweet beauty that was so prominent in the 
days of boyhood, for some of her teeth were gone and 


her raven black hair was tinged with gray and some 
mean old ugly lines had furrowed her cheeks and her 
eyes once black large and sparkling, were faded and 
were now large gray kind eyes, and some furrows on 
her forehead showed that she had passed through the 
war in anxious trouble — but day by day those lost 
beauties returned, the cheeks like an opening flower, 
soon were lit with that old time love beauty that boys 
can always see in a mother's face that probably no 
others can, and when her teeth were reset by the dent- 
ist, I forgot or never again saw her wrinkles, for she 
was still my good and beautiful mother until her death 
at the age of 76 years. 

Father and all the others of our neighboring men had 
grown rough and coarse and I do not think, that old 
soldiers ever make great advance towards an improve- 

There were a few negroes on the old farm that were 
fat and sleek, rotund and happy, and like the rest wel- 
comed us back with that love that can never be ex- 
plained to this generation (I mean a kind of love that 
negroes and whites from long association had borne 
towards each other) that old folks can explain but the 
younger races can not understand, for the war killed 
that love. 

Then I thought of the cost of the war. We have no 
means on earth of fixing a value on human anxiety, no 
unit or multiple that will express degrees of trouble. 
Tears, yes there were enough of tears shed probably to 
have floated our lost warship, "the Maino," and some 
poetic mind has fixed a value on tears as equal to 
diamonds of the first water, and if we should take this 
valuation we might truthfully say it cost a sea of dia- 
monds of tears alone, 

Mr. Stephens said that there were about 1,000,000 of 
lives lost in that war. Let us suppose that each and 
every one of these was an able-bodied man, able to 
fight the battles of a Christian nation, and as such fell. 


The world in all its great advances has never yet fixed a 
price on Christian blood for atoms of blood can have no 
equal in ounces of gold or silver and I will here write X 
as an unknown value for each of 1,000,000 of lives lost. 
In moneys, bonds and other obligations, with property 
destroyed, those who know have placed the cost of the 
war between the states at the sum of $8,000,000,000, a 
sum at that time equal to more than three -fourths of all 
the assessed wealth of all the United States and a sum 
equal to all the coined gold and silver of the world. 

With these great losses the United States discharged' 
about 1,050,000 victorious soldiers from service from a 
devastating campaign and about 150,000 Confederates 
were surrendered and paroled, this being the nucleus 
and condition upon which reconstruction was to be 

By proclamation it was soon learned that the authori- 
ties of the United States would deal with us as individ- 
uals, and also as states. As individuals we had each a 
parole, and by proclamation we were promised amnesty. 
Amnesty for past obedience to state laws. Well, this 
to my mind was a queer thing. My parole said I must 
obey the law of the United States and the state wherein 
I should reside, but it failed to show which I should give 
precedence in case they should not harmonize. I 
thought of course, that as the state enacted all the laws 
pertaining to the individual and adjusted all matters 
wherein citizens were interested and the United States 
enacted laws to govern states as communities, that I 
should do right in obedience to state law, but I found 
that the man who had disobediently skulked the state 

law and fled from her legal executive and joined the 

United States and helped to thrash Texas, was to be 

accounted loyal. And I, who had obeyed the laws, 

was to be called a rebel and accounted disloyal, while 

he, whose views were so large that his patriotism ran 

outside our lawmakers, was to be accounted not a law- 


breaker, but a patriot, and as such he received his re- 

He has been todied, he has been given office, his re- 
ports have been received to the exclusion of others, he 
has been pensioned from the common fund for his diso- 
bedience to the laws of his state. 

We have lived neighbors and are still neighbors, and 
belong to the same church. Our children go to the 
same school and read of the Rebellion, and this writing 
shall be given to them and some great day some great 
mind that loves liberty, that loves patriotic loyalty and 
is free from radicalism may decide, which one of us is 
the rebel. 

Will you now go with me a few steps further. Is the 
acts of the nation calculated to imbibe in us a high 
opinion of law, I mean state law, that law that governs 
our every day actions, or will it give a tendency to be- 
little state law? Has it taught us that the court of arms 
is the highest tribunal on earth and all laws should be 
subservient thereto? Has it shaken our confidence? 
If so, what shall we do to restore confidence? 


Chapter XXXVIII. 


( Chapter XXXVIII taken from Dallas News.) 

Nashville, Tenn., June 22, 1897.— Hon. John H. Rea- 
gan of Texas, '■the only surviving member of ex -Presi- 
dent Davis' cabinet, delivered the following address here 
to-day before the United Confederate Veterans' associa- 
tion : 

Compatriots, Ladies and Gentlemen : This great as- 
semblage and this interesting occasion calls up many 
memories of great events. It brings into review the able 
and earnest discussions which preceded the year 1861, 
on the great questions which led up to the war between 
the states: the separation of the members of the Thirty- 
sixth congress : the action of the southern states in pas- 
sing the ordinances of secession: the organization of the 
government of the Confederate States of America : the 
commencement of hostilities at Charleston harbor : the 
call for volunteers by President Lincoln : the enthusiasm 
with which men on both sides volunteered to enter the 
great struggle : the separation of husbands and fathers 
from wives and children, of sons from fathers and 
mothers, of brothers from sisters, and of lovers from 
their sweethearts, with eyes bedewed with tears and 
hearts throbbing with patriotism, to enter the camps of 
instruction, make the long marches and engage in the 
fierce conflicts of battle. It brings into review the as- 
sembling of mighty armies, their toilsome marches, the 
sickness and suffering in camps, th» thousands of skir- 


mishes and battles, participated in by hundreds of thou- 
sands of brave men, the sufferings of the wounded and 
the great number who fell on each side as martyrs to 
their patriotic devotion to the causes they believed to be 
right and just, in the greatest war of modern times, a 
war in which hundreds of thousands of brave men lost 
their lives, and which left to the future a vast army of 
mourning widows and children, and sorrowing relatives 
and friends, and which caused the sacrifice of billions of 
dollars worth of property. And it calls up our remem- 
brance of the great labor and sacrifices of our noble 
women in caring for the children and the aged at home 
and in preparing and sending to the armies clothes and 
food for their loved ones, and in ministerfng to the sick 
and wounded in the hospitals. 

Upon the foregoing facts the inquiry arises : Why 
all this suffering and death between a people of the same 
country, the same race and in a general way of the same 
political and religious opinions? 


My answer is that it was an inheritance from the gov- 
rnments of Europe and from our ancestors, which raised 
a question involving too much of the social and indus- 
trial structure of society, and too much of property val- 
ues, to admit of adjustment in the ordinary methods of 
negotiation and compromise. And its decision was 
therefore submitted to the arbitrament of war. 

I say it was an inheritance because the authorities, in- 
cluding the crowned heads of Great Britain, France 
and Spain, and the Dutch merchants, planted African 
slavery in all the American colonies. And in their 
times they and the priesthood justified this on the 
grounds that it was a transfer of the Africans from a 
condition of barbarism and cannibalism to a country 
where they could be instructed in the arts of civilized 
life, and in the knowledge of the Christian religion. 


The institution of African slavery thus found its way 
into all of the thirteen American colonies, and it existed 
in all of them at the date of the declaration of American 
independence in 1776. And African slavery existed in 
all but one of these colonies at the time of the formation 
of the constitution of the United States in 1789. There 
were at that time those who objected to it as violating 
the principles of human liberty. But notwithstanding 
such objections, the wise and great men who formed the 
constitution, recognizing the existing industrial and so- 
cial conditions of society which had grown out of the 
existence of African slavery, incorporated in it the fol- 
lowing provisions : 


Article 1, section 2, paragraph 3, is as follows: "Rep- 
resentatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned among 
the several states which may be included in this union 
according to their respective numbers, which may be de- 
termined by adding to the whole number of free per- 
sons, including those bound to service for a term of 
years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three-fifths of 
all other persons.' ' Thus recognizing slavery and the 
partial representation of slaves in congress. 

Article 4, section 2, paragraph 3, provides that : "No 
person held to service or labor in one state, under the 
laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in conse- 
quence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged 
from such service or labor, but shall ba delivered up on 
the claim of the party to whom such service or labor 
may be due." Thus providing for the protection of the 
rights of the owners of slaves by requiring their return 
to their masters when escaping from one state into an- 

Article 1, section 9, paragraph 1, provides as follows: 
"The migration or importation of such persons as any of 
the states now existing may think proper to admit, shall 


not be prohibited by congress prior to the year 1808; but 
a tax or duty may be imposed on such importation not 
to exceed $10 for each person.'' Thus not only by the 
foregoing provisions recognizing African slavery, but 
making provision for the continuance of the slave trade 
for twenty years after the adoption of the constitution. 

The Old and the New Testament Scriptures recognize 
slavery, and it is justified by the history of other nations. 

Those who defended the institution of slavery quoted 
the Old Testament Scriptures, and the advice of Christ 
our Saviour, as given in the New Testament, and the ex- 
ample of the nations of the past in justification of its ex- 


From early times there were those who questioned the 
rightfulness of slavery, possibly without sufficient con- 
sideration to the character of the different races of peo- 
ple. This feeling grew first with the philanthropic and 
religious classes until at last it was seized upon by 
political demagogues as an available method of political 
agitation and declamation by office seekers. It grew 
until mobs, legislatures and courts repudiated the con- 
stitutional provisions, and the laws of congress and the 
decisions of the supreme court of the United States, 
which protected slavery in the states, where it existed, 
and required the rendition of slaves when they escaped 
into other states. The agitation of this question gather- 
ed in strength and violence until it resulted in civil war 
in Kansas, followed by the raid of John Brown and his 
followers, who invaded the state of Virginia for the pur- 
pose of inciting the negroes to a war of races. And 
because he was lawfully arrested and convicted and 
hung by the authorities of the state of Virginia for levy- 
ing war on the state, in an effort to bring about a horrid 
war between the negroes and whites, many of the north- 
ern churches were draped in mourning, and many of the 


northern people applauded his efforts and eulogized this 
felon as a hero and a martyr. This was followed by the 
nomination and election of a purely sectional anti- slav- 
ery ticket for president and vice president of the United 
States, and during the congress which immediately pre- 
ceded the secession of the southern states thirty odd 
measures of compromise were introduced in one or the 
other branch of congress in the hope of securing the 
adoption of a policy by which the union of the states 
and the rights of the states and of the people could be 
preserved and the war prevented. Each of these propo- 
sitions of compromise was introduced either by a south- 
ern man or by a northern democrat, and every one of 
them was received with hooting and derision by the re- 
publican members, as the Congressional Globe of that 
period will show. And the southern members were told 
that they had to submit to the will of the majority, plain- 
ly showing that our people could no longer rely for the 
protection of the rights of the states or of the people, on 
the enforcement of the provisions of the constitution and 
the laws of the United States, Could any people have 
submitted to all this who were worthy of liberty and 
good government? 


You must understand that I do not make this recital 
for the purpose of renewing the prejudices and passions 
of the past, but only for the purpose of showing to our 
children and to the world that the ex -confederates were 
not responsible for the existence of African slavery in 
this country, and were not responsible for the existence 
of the great war which resulted from the agitation of 
that question, and that they were neither traitors nor 

Comrades, by the law of nature I can, at most, be 
with you but a few years longer, and I feel it to be my 
duty to you and to posterity to make these statements of 


the facts of history, which vindicate us against the 
charge of being either rebels or traitors, and which show 
that we were not the authors of a "causeless war, 
brought about by ambitious leaders/' but that our brave 
men fought and suffered and died, and our holy men of 
God prayed, and our noble women suffered patiently and 
patriotically all the privations and horrors of a great 
war, cruelly forced upon us, for the purpose of uphold- 
ing the constitution and laws of the United States, of 
preserving the rights of the several states to regulate 
their own domestic policies and of protecting the people 
against spoliation and robbery by a dominant majority, 
some of whose members, because the Holy Bible sanc- 
tioned slavery, declared that they wanted an "anti- 
slavery Bible and an an ti- slavery God," and who, be- 
cause the constitution of the United States recognized 
and protected slavery, declared that it was a "league 
with hell and a covenant with death." 

Whatever may have been said in the past in the de- 
fense of the institution of slavery, and whatever may 
now be thought of the means by which it was abolished 
in this country, the spirit of the present age is against 
it, and it has passed away, and I suppose no one wishes 
its restoration, if that were practicable. Certainly I 
would not restore it if I had the power. I think it better 
for the black race that they are free, and I am sure it is 
better for the white race that there are no slaves. 

Some great Macaulay of the future will tell these 
grand truths to posterity better and more forcibly than 
I can in this brief address, and will by reference to his- 
tory, to the sacred Scriptures, and to the constitution of 
the United States, as made by our revolutionary fathers 
vindicate the patriotism and the heroic virtues and 
struggles of our people. 


In later times those not familiar with the facts to 
which I am referring have asked the question: "Why 


was this great question not compromised?" stating that 
it would not have cost a fifth of the money to pay for 
and liberate the slaves that the war cost, and that in 
that way the tens of thousands of valuable lives of good 
men might have been saved, and all the attendant suf- 
ferring prevented, 

The first answer to that question is that the slaves in 
the United States, at the beginning of the war, were 
estimated to be of the value of $3,000,000,000, and if they 
were to be liberated common honesty required that it 
should have been at the expense of the nation which was 
responsible for its existence. The republicans and the 
anti- slavery people were then a majority of the whole 
people, and had full possession of the federal govern- 
ment, or were ready and authorized to take possession 
of it. And they demanded that the whole loss to arise 
from the freeing of the slaves should fall on their owners 
and on the southern states. They never proposed, and 
would not have consented, for the federal government 
and the northern people to pay any part of the cost of 
freeing the slaves. Their patriotism was not of the kind 
which would cause them to assume a part of the burden 
of correcting what they claimed to be a great national 
wrong. And that, too, a wrong, if it was a wrong, which 
we inherited from other and older nations, and which 
was incorporated in our social and industrial systems, 
and sanctioned by our constitution, state and federal, in 
the organization of the governments. The agitators 
were willing and anxious to be patriotic and just at the 
expense of other people. 

The second answer to it is that the industrial and 
social systems of southern states were so interwoven 
with the interest of slavery that the people then believed 
the freedom of the slaves without compensation meant 
the bankruptcy of the people and the states where it ex- 
isted to be followed probably by a war of races. I am 
speaking of what they then believed. As an evidence 
that our own people in the earlier days of the republic 


recognized the necessity of acquiescing in the social and 
industrial conditions which had grown out of African 
slavery, history tells us that General Washington, who 
was an extensive slaveholder, was made commander-in- 
chief of our revolutionary armies. He was the president 
of the convention which formed the constitution of the 
United States, and was elected as the first president of 
the United States, and was re-elected to that position. 
Mr. Jefferson, Mr. Madison, Mr. Monroe, General Jack- 
son, Mr. Polk and General Taylor were each elected 
president of the United States, and all of them were the 
owners of slaves. They, like the framers of the consti- 
tution, recognized that this country had inherited a con- 
dition of things in this respect in which it became neces- 
sary to acquiesce. I do not assume to know whether, if 
a proposition to pay for the slaves had been made, it 
would have been accepted. 

Such a sacrifice as that which was demanded of t h 
southern people has not in the world's history been 
submitted to by any people without an appeal to the last 
dread arbitrament of war. And ours were a chivalric, 
intelligent, proud and liberty -loving people, and if they 
had submitted to this sacrifice without a struggle they 
would have proven themselves unworthy to be free men 
and unworthy of the proud title of being Americans. 
And I say now, with deliberation and sincerity, in view 
of all the. calamities of that war, if the same condition of 
things could again occur I would rather accept those 
calamities than belong to a race of cowards and sur- 
render the most sacred rights of self-government to the 
clamor of a majority over-riding the constitution and de- 
manding terms so revolting to our sense of justice. 


In this connection I desire to say that it has been fre- 
quently asserted of late years that at the conference be- 
tween President Lincoln and Secretary Seward of the 


federal side, and Messrs. Stephens, Hunter and Camp- 
bell of the confederate side, at Hampton Roads, on the 
3d of January, 1865, that President Lincoln offered the 
confederates $400,000,000 for the slaves if they would 
abandon the war and return to the union. This story 
has assumed various forms to suit the rhetoric of the 
speakers and writers who have given it currency. I 
wish to assert most solemnly that no such offer in any 
form was made. All the papers relating to the Hampton 
Roads conference are given in "McPherson's History of 
the Rebellion," as he calls it. They show that the joint 
resolution for amending the constitution of the United 
States was passed by congress, submitting to the states 
the question of abolishing slavery in the United States, 
two or three days before the date of that conference. 
The report of the commissioners on the part of the con- 
federacy, which was published at the time, shows that 
no such an offer was made or referred to in that confer- 
ence. The statement of President Davis, and that of 
President Lincoln and of Secretary Seward, shows that 
no such offer was made or talked of at that conference. 
This false statement has been often made. It is dispro- 
ven by every man who was there, and by every paper 
which has been written by or for the men who were 
there. Neither President Lincoln nor any other man on 
the federal side would have dared to make such an offer 
at that time. It was stated at the time, and I believe 
the statement to be true, that the congress hurried the 
joint resolution above named through so as to forestall 
the possibility of any such proposition. The object of 
this untruthful statement was no doubt to cast odium on 
the confederate president and authorities by trying to 
show that they would accept no terms of peace, and 
were responsible for the continuance of the war. Pres- 
ident Davis appointed Vice President Stephens to go to 
Washington in 1861, ostensibly to secure a renewal of 
the cartel for the exchange of prisoners ; but the real 
purpose of his mission was to see President Lincoln for 


the purpose of ascertaining on what conditions the war 
could be terminated. But he was not permitted by the 
federal authorities to pass through their military lines. 
Then he appointed the commissioners to the Hampton 
Roads conference for the same purpose. And afterwards, 
in 1865, he authorized General R. E. Lee to try to nego- 
tiate through General Grant for the same purpose. I 
mention these facts to show that it is a mistake to sup- 
pose that President Davis neglected any means in his 
power to end the war on honorable terms, and mention 
them because of the many misrepresentations which 
have been made on this subject. He could not have 
made public all he did in this respect, at the time, with- 
out discouraging our army and people. And if at any 
time he had proposed or consented to unconditionally 
surrender he would have been in danger of violence at 
the hands of our own people. Neither he nor they pro- 
posed or intended to surrender unconditionally unless 


After the overthrow of the confederate government 
and the surrender of the confederate armies, the work 
of the restoration of federal authority in the southern 
states was commenced, while the excitements and pas- 
sions and prejudices of the war were in the blaze, and 
were intensified by the assassination of President Lin- 
coln, with which it was then unjustly assumed the con- 
federate authorities had some connection, but which was 
regarded by them as most unfortunate for the people 
who had adhered to the fortunes of the confederacy. 

Under the state of feeling which then existed on both 
sides it was hardly to be expected that a wise and tem- 
perate policy of reconstruction would be adopted. While 
many of the churches of the northern states were resolv- 
ing and some of their ministers of the religion of Christ 
were preaching a crusade of hate, proscription and re- 
venge against the southern people. 


The plan adopted for the restoration of the union and 
the pacification of the southern people was to de- 
prive them of all political rights, put them under military 
rule and suspend the right of the writ of habeas corpus, so 
that there could be no relief or redress for any wrong done 
to a citizen, however unlawful or outrageous. Our citi- 
zens were subject to arrest by the military authority 
without an affidavit, or formal charge, or legal warrant, 
and to detention without knowing what the charges 
against them were, and to trial by a drumhead court- 
martial, without the intervention of a jury. 

A large part of the southern states had been devas- 
tated by war, the people had exhausted their resources 
in the endeavor to maintain their cause, and tens of 
thousands of their bravest and best men had either fall- 
en in battle or died in the service. Beaten in battle, de- 
nied political rights and the protection of law, governed 
by an unfriendly military authority and by the negroes, 
carpet baggers, and scalawags (and I mention them in 
the order of their respectability), plundered and robbed 
by employes of the treasury department and constantly 
menaced by loyal leagues, composed of the elements 
above named, their condition seemed to be as hopeless 
as can well be imagined. 

If under the providence of God the life of President 
Lincoln could have been spared so that reconstruction 
and the restoration of the union could have been brought 
about under his supervision and that of the officers and 
soldiers who fought the battles of the union, I believe 
the country would have been saved from the introduction 
of abmormal military governments which are so un- 
friendly to civil rights and political liberty and so con- 
trary to the genius of our government, and that the 
people of the southern states would have been saved 
from much of the enormous sacrifices and suffering 
which they were^ compelled to endure during the period 
of reconstruction, the demagogues in politics the un- 
christian persecutions by religious bodies and the thiev- 


ing treasury officials would not have had so wide a field 
for their operations. 


It is unpleasant to me to make the foregoing recitals 
and the more so because the purpose for which they are 
made may be misunderstood or misrepresented. The 
restoration of peace, good government, the rule of law 
and of good will between those who were once enemies 
is as gratifying to me as it can be to any other citizen. 
But the charge has been constantly made since the war 
that the confederates were robbers and traitors, and the 
effort is all the time being made to educate the rising- 
generation into the belief that their fathers and their 
mothers were rebels and traitors, and therefore lawless 
criminals. Without malice against any of our fellow- 
citizens I feel it to be my duty to the memory of our 
heroic dead, to their surviving associates and to those 
who are to come after us, to make the foregoing state- 
ments in vindication of the truths of history, and in jus- 
tification of the patriotism, the manhood and love of 
justice of those who defended the lost cause and offered 
their all in an effort to preserve their constitutional 
rights against the aggressions of a hostile majority. 


And now that we are again citizens of the United 
States; living under the same government and constitu- 
tion and flag, our late adversaries ought not to desire to 
degrade us in the eyes of posterity, and if they would 
be wise and just they should not wish to place our peo- 
ple in history in the position of being unworthy of the 
rights, liberty and character or citizens of our great and 
common country. 

And while I have accepted, and do accept, in good 
faith, the legitimate results of the war, and while I am, 


and will be, as true to my allegiance and duty to our 
common government as any other citizen can be, I shall 
insist on my right to tell the truths which show that in 
that great struggle we were guided and controlled by a 
sense of duty and by a spirit of patriotism, which caused 
us to stake life, liberty and property in a contest with a 
greatly superior power, rather than basely surrender 
our rights without a struggle. 

It is fitting and proper at this point that I should refer 
to a matter which fitly illustrates the character of the 
southern people. There was never a time during all the 
perils and suffering of reconstruction that men of promi- 
nence who had been on the confederate side could not 
have obtained positions of honor and emolument under 
the federal government if they would have consented to 
surrender their convictions and betray their people. A 
very few did so and thereby earned an everlasting in- 
famy. But nearly all of them stood by their convictions 
and preserved their honor, and thereby proved them- 
selves worthy of citizenship in the greatest and proudest 
government on the earth. 

Having attempted to fulfil an unpleasant duty in what 
I have so far said, I now turn to the consideration of 
more pleasant subjects. 

From the desolation, absence of civil government and 
political rights and of law throughout the southern 
states less than thirty years ago, we now, in all these 
states, have good civil government, good laws faithfully 
enforced, liberty protected, society reorganized, peace 
and industry re-established, with many valuable enter- 
prises put into successful operation, and with a steady 
and wonderful increase in population, wealth and the 
comforts^of civilized life. This constitutes the greatest 
and proudest vindication of the capacity of our people 
for local self government, and is a grander and nobler 
achievement by our people than was ever obtained by 
war. It is the triumph of their capacity for self gov- 
ernment and shows that our people are worthy of the 


possession of the political power and religious liberty 
which they now enjoy, and which shows them worthy of 
political equality with those who were once our enemies. 
In this great centennial exposition of Tennessee we have 
before us a magnificent exhibition of the results of 
southern enterprise and prosperity to gladden the hearts 
of our people and to gratify the pride of the people of 
this great state. And to-day the people of the south 
are as earnest in their attachment to our common gov- 
ernment as those of any other part of the union and 
would make as great sacrifices, if need be, in defense of 
our government as could be made by any other part of 
the American people. Enjoying peace and liberty to- 
day, we can refer with pride to the courage and heroism 
of our soldiers in the late war and to the gallantry and 
skill of our officers. And when impartial history comes 
to be written we do not doubt but that it will be seen 
that they were never excelled in the qualities of patient 
endurance and manly courage by any other people. 


The names of Jefferson Davis, R. E. L,ee, Stonewall 
Jackson, Albert Sydney Johnson and many others of 
our heroic leaders, will go into history illumined by a 
halo of courage and skill and purity of life and patriot- 
ism unsurpassed by any other names in history. As in- 
dicating the faith of President Davis in God, and his de- 
vout earnestness, I recall attention to the closing sen- 
tence of his inaugural address, after his election under 
the constitutional government of the confederacy, made 
on the 22d day of February, 1862. Raising his hands, 
at the close of his address, and looking towards the 
heavens, he said: "And now, O God, I commit my 
country and her cause into thy holy keeping/' Thus 
showing the solemnity with which he assumed anew the 
duties of president of the confederacy. 



History notes with its richest praises the matrons of 
Rome. They were no doubt worthy of all that has been 
said of them. But their honors cluster about them 
when Rome was a great and victorious nation. This is 
not said to their discredit, but to contrast with them the 
noble and devoted women of the confederacy, the grand- 
eur of whose lives and conduct was exhibited in a cause 
in which the odds were greatly against their country, in 
which great sacrifices were necessary, and in which 
success was at all times doubtful. I never felt my in- 
ability to do justice to any subject so keenly as I do 
when attempting to do justice to the character, service 
and devotion of the women of the confederacy. They 
gave to the armies their husbands, fathers, sons and 
brothers with aching hearts, and bade them goodbye 
with sobs and tears. But they believed the sacrifice 
was due to their country and her cause. They assumed 
the care of their homes and of the children and aged. 
Many of them who had been reared in ease and luxury 
had to engage in all the drudgery of the farm or shop. 
Many of them worked in the fields to raise the means of 
feeding their families. Spinning wheels and looms were 
multiplied where none had been seen before, to enable 
them to clothe their families and furnish clothing for the 
loved ones in the army, to whom, with messages of love 
and encouragement they were, whenever they could, 
sending something to wear or to eat. And like angels 
of mercy they visited and attended the hospitals with 
lint and bandages for the wounded and medicines for 
the sick and such nourishment as they could for both. 
And their holy prayers at all times went to the throne of 
God for the safety of those dear to them, and for the 
success of the confederate cause. There was a courage 
and a moral heroism in their lives superior to that which 
'animated our brave men, for the men were stimulated 
by the presence of their associates, the hope of applause 


and by the excitements of battle. While these noble 
women in the seclusion and quietude of their homes 
were inspired by a moral courage which could come on- 
ly from God and the love of country. I hope we are to 
have a Battle Abbey, and if we should the honor of our 
southland demands that at the same place there should 
be a splendid monument erected to commemorate the 
constancy, the services and the virtues of the noble 
women of the confederacy. And since the war some of 
our grand and noble women, the widow of President 
Davis, the widow of Stonewall Jackson and the widow 
of Colonel C. M. Winkler of Texas have earned the grati- 
tude of our people by books they have furnished us, 
containing most valuable contributions to the literature 
of the war and supplying a feature in it that no man has 
or could supply. • 

To illustrate the character and devotion of the women 
of the confederacy, I will repeat a statement made to me 
during the war by Governor Letcher of Virginia. He 
had visited his home in the Shenandoah valley, and on 
his return to the state capital called at the house of an 
old friend who had a la*ge family. He found no one 
but the good old mother at home, and inquired about 
the balance of the family. She told him that her hus- 
band, her husband's father and her ten sons were all in 
the army. And on his suggestion that she must feel 
lonesome, having had a large family with her, and to be 
now left alone, her answer was that it was very hard, 
but that if she had ten more sons they should all go to 
the army. Can ancient or modern history show a nobler 
or more unselfish and patriotic devotion to any cause? 


There have been and there may be still those who af- 
fect to speak lightly of the confederacy, but a cause and 
a country which it required more than four years of ter- 
rible war, and armies of more than two million men, and 

tfHE GREAT WAft. 300 

which cost the lives of hundreds of thousands, the ex- 
penditure of billions of dollars, and the sacrifice of other 
billions of dollars worth of property to overcome, can 
hardly be belittled by any honest or sensible man. We 
can well afford to await the verdict which history will 
render on the men and women of the late confederacy. 


Chapter XXXIX. 



Texas, though her annals be brief, counts upon her 
"roll of honor" the names of many heros, living and 
dead. Their splendid services are the inestimable lega- 
cies of the past and present, to the future. Of the lat- 
ter, it is the high prerogative of the State to embalm 
their names and memories as perpetual exemplars to 
excite the generous emulation of the Texan youth to the 
latest posterity. Of the former, it is our pleasant prov- 
vince to accord them those honors which their services, 
in so eminent a degree, entitle them to receive. Few 
lands, since the days of the "Scottish Chiefs," have 
furnished material upon which to predicate a Douglas, 
a Wallace, or a Ravenswood; and the adventure of 
chivalric enterprise, errant quest of danger, and the 
personal combat, were regulated, together with the 
knight's armorial trappings, to the musty archives of 
"Tower" and "Pantheon," until the Comanche Bed- 
ouins of the Texan plains tendered, in bold defiance, the 
savage gauntlet to the pioneer knights of progress and 
civilization. And, though her heraldic roll glows with 
the names of a Houston, a Rusk, Lamar, McCulloch, 
Haye3, Chevallie, which illumine the pages of her his- 
tory with an effulgence of glory, Texas never nurtured 
on her maternal bosom a son of more filial devotion, of 


more loyal patriotism, or indomitable will to do and 
dare, than the subject of this brief sketch. 

Laurence Sullivan Ross was born in the town of Ben- 
tonsport, Iowa, in tho year of our Lord, one thousand 
eight hundred and thirty -eight. His father, Captain S. 
P. Ross, removed to Texas in 1839, and cast his fortunes 
with the pioneers who were blazing the pathway of civi- 
lization into the wilds of a terra incognita, as Texas then 
was. Captain S. P. Ross was, for many years, pre- 
eminent as a leader against the implacable savages, 
who made frequent incursions into the settlements. 
The duty of repelling these forays usually devolved up- 
on Captain Ross and his neighbors, and, for many 
years, his company constituted the only bulwark of 
safety between the feeble colonists and the scalping- 
knife. The rapacity and treachery of his Comanche 
and Kiowa foes demanded of Captain Ross sleepless vig- 
ilance, acute sagacity, and a will that brooked no ob- 
stacle or danger. It was in the performance of this ar- 
dous duty that he slew, in single combat, "Big Foot," a 
Comanche chief of great prowess, and who was for 
many years the scourge of the early Texas frontier. The 
services of Captain S. P. Ross are still held in grateful 
remembrance by the descendants of his compatriots, 
and his memory will never be suffered to pass away 
while Texans feel a pride in the sterling worth of the 
pioneers who laid the foundation of Texas' greatness 
and glory. 

The following incident, as illustrative of the charac- 
ter and spirit of the man and times, is given: "Cap- 
tain Ross, who had been visiting a neighbor, was return- 
ing home, afoot, accompanied by his little son *Sul,' as 
the General was familiarly called. When within a half 
mile of his house, he was sorrounded by fifteen or twenty 
mounted Comanche warriors, who commenced an im- 
mediate attack. The Captain, athletic and swift of foot, 
threw his son on his back, and out- ran their ponies to 
the house unhurt amid a perfect shower of arrows." 


Such were among the daily experiences of the child, 
and with such impressions stamped upon the infantile 
mind, it was but natural that the enthusiastic spirit of 
the ardent youth should lead him to seek adventures up- 
on the ''war-path, " similar to those that had signalized 
his honored father's prowess upon so many occasions. 
Hence, we find "Sul" Ross, during vacation from his 
studies at Florence Wesleyan University, Alabama, 
though scarcely twenty years of age, in command of 135 
friendly Indians, co-operating with the United States 
cavalry against the hostile Comanches. During this 
campaign the dashing Major Earl Van Dorn led an ex- 
pedition against the hostiles in the Wichita mountains, 
which culminated in the hotly-contested battle of the 
Wichita, in October, 1858. In this engagement, the red 
warriors of Captain "Sul" Ross, led by their intrepid 
young white chief, performed prodigies of valor, and to 
the sagacity, skill, and bravery of Ross was the com- 
plete annihilation of the hostiles, in a great measure, at- 
ributable. In the moment of victory, Ross was fel- 
led to the earth by receiving two dangerous wounds, by 
a rifle-shot which pierced his arm and side, and was 
borne from the field on the shields of his faithful and 
brave Indian retainers. In the heart of the engagement, 
and before being shot down, Ross discovered a little 
white girl, a captive, among the Indians. Immediately 
upon her discovery was her rescue determined upon, 
and, a murderous melee, was effected. For the particu- 
lars of which, as well as of the fortune of "Lizzie Ross," 
vide the concluding pages of this memoir. For conspicu- 
ous gallantry on this occasion, Major Van Dorn, upon 
the field of battle, drew up a recommendation, which 
was signed by all the officers of the gallant old Second 
United States Cavalry, addressed to the Secretary of 
War, asking the promotion of Captain Ross, and his as- 
signment to duty in the regular army. The venerable 
General Winfield Scott, Commander of the United States 
Army, wrote an autograph letter to the wounded young 


leader, complimenting, in the highest terms, the noble 
qualities displayed on that trying occasion, and tendered 
him his friendship and assistance. Captain Ross made 
no attempt to use the recommendation of the United 
States officers, whatever, but, as soon as his wounds ad- 
mitted of travel, he returned to college, and graduated 
in 1859. 

Immediately upon his return home, Captain Ross was 
placed in command of the rangers on the frontier, by 
appointment of Governor Sam Houston, and repaired 
forthwith to his post of duty. In December, 1860, at 
the head of sixty rangers, Captain Ross followed the 
trial of a large body of Comanches, who had raided 
through Parker county, to their village on the head- 
waters of Pease river. Though proverbial for vigilance 
and cunning, Captain Ross succeeded in effecting a 
complete surprise, and in the desperate encounter of 
"war to the knife" that ensued, nearly all the warriors 
bit the dust. So signal a victory had never before been 
gained over the fierce and warlike Comanches, and ever 
since that fatal December day, in 1860, the dispirited 
Comanche "brave" dates the dissipation of that wand of 
invincibility which it seemed the "Great Spirit" had 
thrown around them. The blow was as sudden, and as 
irresistible, as a thunder- bolt from a cloudless sky, and 
as crushing and remorseless as the hand of fate itself. 
Ross, sword in hand, led the furious charge of the rang- 
ers, and Peta Nocona, chief of the tribe, arose from his 
last sleep on earth, aroused by the demoniacal saturna- 
lia in the midst of which his warriors were melting away 
like snow-flakes on the river's brink, to strike, at least, 
an avenging blow ere the night of death had drawn its 
sable curtains around and above his devoted tribe. 
Singling out Ross, as the most conspicuous of his assail- 
ants, with eyes flashing and nerves steeled by the crisis 
of fate, Peta Nocona rushed on the wings of the wind to 
this revel of death. The eagle eyes of the young ran- 
ger took in the situation at a glance, and he welcomed 


the redoubtable chief to the contest with a smile. Des- 
perate was this hand-to-hand grapple, for there was no 
alternative but victory or death. Peta Nocona fell 30v- 
ered with wounds at the feet of his conqueror, and his 
last sigh was taken up in mournful wailings by the fugi- 
tives fleeing from this village of blood and death. Many 
of these latter perished on the inhospitable plains, in a 
fruitless endeavor to reach their friends and allies on the 
head-waters of the Arkansas river. The immediate 
fruits of this victory were 450 horses and all their accu- 
mulated winter supplies. But the subsequent results 
are not to be computed on the basis of dollars and cents. 
The spirit of the Comanche was here broken, and to 
this crushing defeat is to be attributed the pacific con- 
duct of these hitherto implacable foes of the white race 
during the civil war — a been to Texas of incalculable 

It was in this engagement that Captain Ross rescued 
"Cynthia Ann Parker," after a captivity of twenty-five 
years, or since the capture of "Parker's Fort," in 1830 
(see Thrall's History of Texas, page 455,) near the site 
of the the town of Groesbeck, Limestone county. Gen- 
eral Ross corrects the statement of Mr. Thrall, to the 
effect that Cynthia Ann Parker was dressed in male at- 
tire, nor was there much doubt as to her identity, as in 
conversing with her, through the medium of his Mexican 
servant, who had also been a captive to the Comanches 
and perfectly conversant with their language, there was 
but little doubt on the part of Ross as to who his captive 
really was; and he dispatched a special messenger for 
her uncle, Colonel Parker. In the meantime, sending 
Cynthia Ann to Camp Cooper, so that Mrs. Evins, the 
wife of Captain (after Lieutenant- General) N. G. 
Evans could properly attend to her necessities. 

After the carnage had ceased, Captain Ross discov- 
ered a little Indian boy lying concealed in the tall grass, 
expecting, in conformity to the savage customs of his 
own race, to be killed immediately upon discovery. 


Ross, with kind words, placed the little fellow upon his 
horse behind himself, and took him to camp. The little 
captive was named "Pease," in honor of Governor E. 
M. Pease. Captain Ross took "Pease" home, and 
properly cared for him, and he is now with his benefac- 
tor, a full-blooded Comanche Indian, though a civilized 
and educated gentleman. 

Captain Ross sent the shield, bow, and lance of Peta No- 
cona to Governor Houston, who placed them in the arch- 
ives at Austin, where they now remain, encrusted and 
stained with his blood. In a letter, recognizing the great 
service rendered the State by Captain Ross in dealing 
the Indians this crushing blow, Governor Houston says: 
"Your success in protecting the frontier gives me great 
satisfaction. I am satisfied that, with the same oppor- 
tunities, you would rival, if not excel, the greatest ex- 
ploits of McCuiloch or Jack Hays. Continue to repel, 
pursue, and punish every body of Indians coming into 
the state, and the people will not withhold their praise." 

But the tempest of sectional hate, that had so long 
been distracting the country, was now culminating into 
a seething, whirling cyclone of war, and such a spirit as 
Ross could not remain confined to the mere border 
foray, when armed legions were mustering for the ti- 
tantic strife; he, therefore, tendered his resignation to 
Governor Houston, who, in recognition of the services 
rendered by Ross, had appointed him his aide-de-camp, 
with the rank of Colonel. Ross' resignation drew from 
Governor Houston the following letter, than which a 
more gratifying testimonial of his worth and services 
could not be tendered a young man of scarce twenty- 
three years of age: 

"Executive Department, Austin, Texas, 
"February 23, 1861. 
"Captain L. S. Ross, 

"Commanding Texas Rangers: 

"Sir — Your letter of the 13th, tendering your resig- 
nation as Captain in the ranging service of Texas, has 


been received. The Executive regrets that you should 
think of resigning your position, as the state of the 
frontier requires good and efficient officers. He is, 
therefore, unwilling to accept your resignation. * 
The Executive has always had confidence in your ca- 
pacity as an officer; and your deportment, as a soldier 
and gentleman, has met with his entire approval. It is 
his desire that you at once increase your command to 
eighty-three, rank and file, and take the field again. 

"Very respectfully, 
"[Signed] "SAM HOUSTON." 

Captain Ross called Governor Clarke's attention to 
the necessity of entering into treaty stipulations with 
the Indians on our frontier; and Major Van Dorn also 
urged the same measure upon the Governor, and sug- 
gested Captain Ross as the most proper person to con- 
duct the negotiation on the part of the state, as it was 
well known he had the full confidence of the "Texas 
Indians," whom he commanded in the Wichita cam- 
paign. In response to these suggestions, Governor 
Clarke wrote Captain Ross as follows : 

"Austin, July 13, 1861. 
"Captain L. S. Ross: 

"Dear /S Y zV — When you were here, a few days ago, 
you spoke to me of the disposition of the Indians to treat 
with the people of Texas. At the time you did so, I 
was so crowded with business that I was unable to give 
to the subject the consideration its importance demand- 
ed. I, nevertheless, concluded and determined to adopt 
and carry out your suggestions. I would be pleased for 
you to inform me whether it may now be in time to ac- 
complish the objects you spoke of, and, if so, whether 
you would be willing to undertake its execution. You 
mentioned, I believe, that a day was fixed by the 
Indians for the interview, but that you informed them 
that by that time Texas could not be ready. 

"Very respectfully, 
"[Signed] "ERWARD CLARKE." 


In pursuance of this programme, Captain Ross re- 
ceived his credentials from the Governor, and, taking 
with him Mr. Downs, of the Waco Examiner, and two 
or three more young friends, set out for the plains. 
Arriving at Gainsville, Ross met an Indian trader, whom 
he knew, named Shirley, whose brother was an inter- 
preter, and both of whom lived in the Indian country. 
He was about to engage the assistance and co-operation 
of these men, when he learned that General Pike had 
been commissioned, and was then en route to Fort Sill 
to enter into treaty stipulations with the Indians, on the 
part of the Confederate government. Captain Ross, 
deeming that the interests of Texas could be best sub- 
served by non -action, as certainly all expense and 
responsibility was obviated, did not attend the inter- 
view; nor, indeed, did he allow to transpire the nature 
of his business in that section, at all though, through 
the medium of Shirley, Jones, Bickle, and one or two 
other white men living with the Indians, all of whom 
were well known to Ross, the Indians were fully pre- 
pared and anxious to enter into friendly relations with 
the South; so, that when General Pike arrived the 
ground lay fair before him, and he found no difficulty in 
arranging the terms. Captain Ross, who had been in 
correspondence with the above-named white residents 
of the Indian section, realized the importance of prompt 
action on the part of the South, before commissioners of 
the United States could have opportunities for seducing 
the Indians from their natural friends. Finding that 
the Confederacy was moving to the accomplishment of 
the same object, Ross possessed too much sagacity to 
invite a conflict of authority between Texas and the 
Confederacy as was the case in some other States by a 
too liberal interpretation of the sovereign prerogative of 
•the States; and, while saving Texas the expense of the 
negotiation, and all responsibility in the matter, silently 
contributed to the accomplishment of General Pike's 
mission. The value of this treaty to the South can not 


well be overestimated. It not only obviated the neces- 
sity for the presence of a considerable force on the 
frontier which was required elsewhere, but it actually 
contributed to the augmentation of the Confederate 
ranks. This great service rendered Texas, and partic- 
ularly to the immediate frontier, was wholly unselfish 
and gratuitous, and it is believed the true statement of 
the case, now, for the first time, finds itself in print. 
Seeing the consummation of this important affair well 
under way, Ross returned to Waco and joined, as a 
private, the company of Captain P. F. Ross, his elder 
brother. This company was, with others, consolidated 
into the Sixth Regiment of Texas Cavalry, at the city of 
Dallas, Texas, and L. S. Ross was elected Major, and 
commissioned as such September 12th, 1861. In this 
same regiment, ex- Governor J. W. Throckmorton was 
Captain of Company "K," and John S. Griffith Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel, Colonel B. Warren Stone being the 
Colonel. The regiment immediately took up the line of 
march for General Ben McCulloch's army in Missouri. 
The regiment participated in the battle of Chustenahlah 
(Creek Nation) with distinguished gallantry, December, 
1861, and in the three days' battle at Elk Horn, or Pea 
Ridge, Arkansas. Just previous to this latter engage- 
ment, Major Ross was dispatched upon a raid, at the 
head of a detachment of about 300 men, composed of 
companies of the Third and Sixth Texas Cavalry, in the 
enemy's rear. This delicate expedition, demanding the 
consummate address of a prompt and decisive command- 
er, was attended with eminent success, General Ross 
capturing numbers of prisoners and destroying immense 
quantities of quartermaster and commissary stores. 

The "Army of the West," composed of the division of 
the lamented McCulloch and General Price, were trans- 
ferred to the Cis-Mississippi Department to re-enforc« 
General Beauregard at Corinth, Mississippi, where he 
was confronted by an overwhelming force of the enemy. 
The Sixth Texas, as were the other cavalry regiments, 



was dismounted, and their horses sent to Texas. At 
Corinth, the command was engaged in a number of out- 
post affairs until in May, when the first year's service 
having expired, the regiment was reorganized, and 
Major L. S. Ross was elected Colonel. Immediately up- 
on his election he was assigned to the command of the 
brigade in which his regiment was incorporated, in the 
following order from division head -quarters: 

"Head -quarters Jones' Division, 

May 26, 1862. 
Special Orders No. II — Extract. 

I. Colonel Laurence S. Ross will immediately as- 
sume command of Roane's Brigade, Jones' Division, 
Army of the West. 

"By command of 

"L. JONES, Major- General, 
"Charles S. Stringfellow, A. A. G." 
Colonel Ross, with his characteristic modesty, declined 
the honor, and prevailed with General Jones to allow 
him to remain in command of his own regiment, and 
General Phifer was subsequently placed in command of 
the brigade. The summer of 1862 was spent in the 
camp at Tupelo, Mississippi; the time being principally 
employed in drilling the regiments, in the case of the 
dismounted Texans in transforming natural troopers in- 
to unwilling infantrymen. The next engagement of im- 
portance was the storming of Corinth, and the struggle 
at Hatchie bridge for the temporary salvation of the 
"Army of the West." And, as an authorative elucida- 
tion of the part borne by Ross and his men, on those 
two trying occasions, the following letters from General 
Dabney H. Maury and General Pryor are adduced: 
"Head -quarters Department of the Gulf, 

"Mobile, Alabama, October 6, 1863. 
"My Dear Colonel: 

"General Jackson asked me to have some colors made 
for his division. Please send me, at once, the names of 
the battles in which my old Texas regiments were en- 


gaged prior to coming under my command, as I wish to 
have them placed on their colors. I always think of the 
behavior of the Texans at Corinth, and at the Hatchie, 
next day, as entitled to rank with the very "gamest" 
conduct displayed by any troops in this war. It does 
not seem to be generally known, but it is a fact, that the 
fragment of my shattered division withstood the attack 
of Ord's corps, and sucessfully checked it until the whole 
train of the army had changed its line of march. For 
about an hour the remnant of Phifer's Brigade, com- 
manded by Colonel L. S. Ross, held the Hatchie bridge, 
and with the light batteries, kept the enemy back. Then 
Cabell's brigade came up, and the fight was maintained 
exclusively by my division until we were ordered to re- 
tire, which was done in a deliberate and soldierly man- 
ner. I often refleet, with satisfaction, on that fight as 
one of the most creditable to the troops engaged of 
which I have any knowledge, and I do not believe any 
thing is known of it outside of the division. No regi- 
ment can have a more honorable name upon its flag 
than "Hatchie," and, to my certain knowledge, no regi- 
ment can more justly and proudly bear that name on its 
colors than the Sixth Texas Cavalry. 

"With kind regards, Colonel, I am truly yours, 
"[Signed] "DABNEY H. MAURY." 

"Memphis, Tennessee, June 4, 1867. 
"General L. S. Ross, 

"Waco, Texas: 
"My Dear Sir — I am requested by General Forrest, 
who is completely immersed in business connected with 
a 1 arge railroad contract in Arkansas, to acknowledge 
the receipt of your very esteemed favor of the 21st ult., 
and to return his, and my own, sincere thanks for your 
report. You may very well suppose f took great inter- 
est in, not only reading your summary of operations 
while with Forrest, but also in seeing, for the first time, 
the high testimony General Maury bears to your old 
regiment at Hatchie bridge. For, you will remember, I 


was with you, on your staff, on that occasion, and have 
always taken some little credit to myself for the assist- 
ance I was so fortunate as to be able to render to your 
brigade that day. I was the first to discover that 
Moore's Brigade, which we had crossed the river to 
support, as also another command (Whitfield's Legion, 
I think), had both been scattered, or destroyed as or- 
ganizations, and that your small brigade, of less than 
700 men, was about to be assailed by Hulburt's whole 
army. I remember that I gained this information from 
General Moore, whom I accidentally met retiring from 
the front, all alone on the bank of the river, and imme- 
diately communicated to you, with the request of Gen. 
Moore that you shoulp 'fall back' across the stream, or 
you would be overwhelmed in ten minutes, or less time, 
by a force of at least 8,000 men ; I remember that you 
refused, at first, to comply with Moore's request, and 
sent Captain D. R. Gurley and myself to General Maury 
for orders, who, upon ascertaining the facts, immedi- 
ately dispatched you the order to retire. Then, at 
'common time,' the brigade was moved by the left flank 
to the road leading to the bridge (without letting the 
men know, at first, that they were falling back), when 
the order to 'file left' was given, and the command 
brought off in good order, quietly and safely, with the 
exception of a portion of the extreme right, which, mis- 
understanding the first order, moved by the 'right 
flank' instead of the left, and so became separated, and 
near a hundred of them captured. Withdrawing to the 
east bank of the Hatchie river, and taking position on a 
little ridge two or three hundred yards distant, the brig- 
ade there made the gallant stand for several hours, to 
which General Maury so comphmentarily alludes. With 
best regards to my friend Gurley, whom I shall always 
remember as one of the best truest, and most efficient of 
men I ever knew, 

"I remain, my dear sir, very truly yours, 
"[Signed] "J. A. PRYOR." 


But as the foregoing pages of this narrative deals 
with the services of Ross in the Confederate army, it 
would be a useless repetition to repeat what has already 
been said, unless having a direct bearing upon General 
Ross individually, or tending to illustrate some trait of 

The defeated Confederate army retreated, via Holly 
Springs to Grenada, Mississippi, near which place the 
four Texas regiments were remounted, as already stated. 
Then came the Holly Springs raid, which forced Grant 
to retire to Memphis, Tennessee, thus delaying the 
Vicksburg catastrophe twelve months. Then the march 
to Tennessee, and the brilliant action at Thompson's 
Station, in which three thousand of the enemy were 
captured. Then the long and tedious march to Missis- 
sippi for the relief of beleaguered Vicksburg, and . the 
innumerable affairs in the performance of this duty; 
the fall of Vicksburg and retreat to Jackson, on every 
foot of which road Ross' Brigade disputed stubbornly 
the advance of Sherman. The services of Colonel Ross 
were fully appreciated by his superiors in rank, and he 
was placed in command of a brigade composed of the 
First Mississippi Cavalry and the Sixth Texas, and dis- 
patched to the Tennessee valley, conducting a brilliant 
campaign, against vastly superior forces, by land and 
river. In testimony of the high appreciation in which 
they held Colonel Ross, the following testimonial of the 
officers of the First Mississippi Cavalry is adduced : 

"Camp First Mississippi Cavalry, 
"December 21, 1863. 
"Colonel L. S. Ross: 

"The officers of the First Mississippi Cavalry desiring 
to express their appreciation of you as an officer, have 
designated the undersigned as a committee to commu- 
nicate their feelings. 

"It is with profound regret that they part with you as 
their Brigade Commander, and will cherish, with kind 
remembrance, your generous and courteous conduct 


toward them, and the gallant bearing you have ever 
displayed in leading them in battle. The service, with 
all its hardships and privations, has been rendered 
pleasant under your direction and leadership. They 
deplore the circumstances which render it necessary 
that they should be taken from your command, but feel 
confident that, in whatever field you may be called upon 
to serve, the country will know no better or more effi- 
cient officer. Our regret is shared by all the men of the 
regiment, and you carry with you their best wishes for 
your continued success. 

"In conclusion, allow us to say, we are proud to have 
served under you, and with your gallant Texans, and 
hope yours, and theirs, and our efforts in behalf of our 
bleeding country, will at length be crowned with suc- 
cess. Very respectfully, 

"W. V. LESTER, Captain Company K. 
"J. E. TURNER, Captain Company I. 
"J. A. KING, Captain Company G." 

Lieutenant-General Stephen D. Lee wrote Mr. Sed- 
don, the Secretary of War, October 2, 1863: "Colonel 
L. S. Ross is one of the best disciplinarians in the army, 
and has distinguished himself on many battle-fields, 
and his promotion and assignment will increase the ef- 
ficiency of the most reliable troops under my command." 

General D, H. Maury wrote from Mobile, Alabama, 
October 6, 1863 : "During the battle of Hatchie, Colo- 
nel L. S. Ross commanded his brigade, and evinced 
such conspicuous gallantry, that, when called upon to 
report to the War Department the name of the officer 
who had been especially distinguished there, and at 
Corinth, I reported the name of Colonel L. S. Ross to 
General S. Cooper, Adjutant and Inspector- General of 
the Confederate States Army." 

Hon. F. R. Lubbock, while a member of the Presi- 
dent's staff at Richmond, Virginia, wrote General Ross : 
"I have learned, with pride and great satisfaction, of 
the good behavior, and gallant conduct, and high-bear- 


ing of the Texas soldiers, and particularly of Ross' 

General W. H. Jackson, commanding Cavalry Divis- 
ion, wrote the Secretary of War, October 1, 1863: "I 
regard Colonel L. S. Ross as one of the best disciplinar- 
ians, and one of the most gallant officers, in the 'Army 
of the West.' " 

General Joseph E. Johnston wrote the Secretary of 
War, October 3, 1863, urging the promotion of Colonel 

All this was done positively without the solicitation 
of Colonel Loss, and, in point of fact, without his knowl- 
edge and consent. The first intimation that Ross had 
the honor to be conferred upon him, was the reception 
of his commission as a Brigadier-General, in the pres- 
ence of the enemy, before Yazoo City. The appoint- 
ment sought the man, and there was no one amid all that 
galaxy of glory, who wore the " wreathed stars" during 
the stormy period of the war, more deserving the honor 
than Laurence Sullivan Ross. 

We may merely mention the most salient features of 
the campaigns, henceforth, which, like the rounds of a 
ladder, bear us, step by step, to the end. 

Sherman commenced his memorable march from 
Vicksburg to Meridian. Ross harrassed his columns in 
front, rear, and flank incessantly, and retarded the Fed- 
eral advance until the defeat of Smith's corps, by Gen. 
Forrest, near West Point, caused Sherman to abandon 
the idea of marching to Mobile, as he subsequently did 
to Savannah. Ross was now dispatched, in post-haste, 
to the Yazoo valley, up which stream a Federal flotilla 
was ascending, accompanied by a land force of 3,500 

The spirited battles of "Liverpool, " "Satartia," and 
"Yazoo City," were fought, each resulting in a com- 
plete victory for Ross, who drove the Federals on board 
their transports, and, though protected by ironclad gun- 
boats, drove them down the Yazoo and into Vicksburg. 


The following testimonial of the citizens of Yazoo City, 
to the services of Ross and his brigade, is a volume in 
itself : 

44 Yazoo City, February 6, 1864. 
"General L. S. Ross: 

"We the undersigned, citizens of Yazoo City, do 
hereby tender you, and your gallant command, our 
heartfelt thanks for the noble manner in which you 
have repelled the enemy, though far superior in num- 
bers, thus saving us from the insults and other indigni- 
ties which they would have heaped upon us. 

"[Signed]: W. H. Mangum, John M. Clark, S. H. 
Wilson, Alex. Smith, James P. Thomas, Jr., M. P. 
Dent, R. M. Grail, H. B. Kidd, Mark Berry, S. D. 
Hightower, F. M. Cassels, John Smith, D. Kearney, R. 
C. Shepherd, W. L. Stamford, S. C. Goosey, Richard 
Stephens, S. T. Pierse, F. Barksdale, F. G. Stewart, 

Gibbs, Louis Franklin, J. W. Barnett, C. Hollings- 

worth, Louis Rosenthral, A. Asher, M. L. Enlich, John 
Hagman, Jacob Hagman, A. H. Montgomery, Captain 
O. T. Plummer (Volunteer and Conscript Bureau), 
Captain W. J. Blackburn (Volunteer and Conscript Bu- 
reau)B. J, Harris, James Schmitt, W. Ragster, R. B. 
Powell, R. R. Callahan, J. O. Dwyer, J. Bradley, C. 
Swann, Joseph Carr, J. W. Campton, Samuel Goodwin, 

J. S. Wallace, Fred, Knabke, John S. Murphy, 

Murphy, J. Mozer, John Reilly, James Carter, James P. 
O'Reilley, H. C. Tyler, Thomas R. Smith, Hiram Harri- 
son. " 

The brigade was ordered from the Yazoo section to 
re -enforce the army of General Johnston, in Georgia. 
The engagements during this campaign were of almost 
daily occurrence. Ross' Brigade, at times, consti- 
tuted a portion of the Confederate line in front of Sher- 
man, and, at other times, was engaged in repelling, 
fighting, and capturing Federal raiders in the rear of 
General Johnston's army. In the advance to Nash- 
ville , Ross and Armstrong were the eyes of Hood, and, 


in his defeat and retreat, their two brigades absolutely 
saved the army from annihilation. But, as has been 
aptly said, the tide of Confederate success reached its 
greatest height in Pickett's charge upon Cemetery 
Heights, and Hood's ephemeral successes were but the 
spasmodic efforts that precede final dissolution. The 
end came; and the commencement of the end dates 
from the day that General Johnston inaugurated his ig- 
noble retreat by retiring from Dalton, Georgia. Had 
he assumed the offensive there, the Confederacy would 
have been spared the sad catastrophe that befell it. 

It is hot pleasant to contemplate these heroic men 
struggling against an iliad of woes. They had borne 
their banners on the highest waves of victory, and 
stood as conquerers on the Ohio itself. Now, footsore 
and weary, ragged, famished, after nine-tenths of their 
numbers had been offered as sacrifices upon the altar of 
duty, they stood contemplating the inevitable. The 
rest is known of all. 

General Ross returned to his home, near Waco, and, 
with his interesting family, lived the quiet and honora- 
ble life of a farmer. Since his twentieth year, he had 
shared all the vicissitudes of a soldier's life. The 
golden morning of life had been spent, without the hope 
of fee or reward, in the arduous duties and dangers of 
the battle field. He now sought repose, content to re- 
main on 

"The Sabine farm, amid contiguous hills, 
Remote from honors and their kindred ills, 

But, in 1873, his friends called him from retirement by 
electing him Sheriff of McLennan county. In this po- 
sition he remained several years, and so efficient were 
his services, that he was styled, by those who had op- 
portunities forjudging, "The model Sheriff of Texas!" 
Voluntarily retiring from office, he again sought the 
privacy of his country home. In 1875, he was elected a 
member of the Constitutional Convention that framed 


the present organic law of Texas. As tending to illus- 
trate, in some degree, the part borne by General Ross, 
and the policies advocated by him in the prosecution of 
this grave duty, a few extracts are reproduced from the 
leading journals of the time. The Waco Daily Tele- 
phone, of November 8, 1877, in a rather hostile review 
of the Constitution, and especially of Article V. (the 
Judiciary), says: 

"Judge Ballinger and General Ross protested against 
their action (the "Rutabagas"), but were overslaughed. 
* Our readers will remember the unanswerable 
argument of General Ross against the reduction of the 
judges, salaries, and judicial districts, against which 
the "Rutabagas" opposed— not their arguments, but 
their votes." 

The State Gazette, Colonel John D. Elliott, editor, 

"We can never refer to the name of General Ross 
without feeling an inspiration of admiration scarcely 
ever equalled in our experience of lite. He is one of 
nature's noblemen — as artless and unostentatious as a 
child, as courageous and heroic as ever bore the image 
of man, and as able as the ablest of the land. His 
record in the Constitutional Convention showed him as 
exalted a patriot and statesman as the man of letters 
and thorough representative of the people. He is emi- 
nently fitted for the highest trust of the Commonwealth. 
We know of no citizen of the State who would add 
greater luster in her chief magistracy than General Sul 

The following letter is from the pen of Colonel John 
Henry Brown, and appeared in the columns of the Dal- 
las Morning Call : 

"Another Richmond 1 — A Good Man for Governor — 
Enthusiastic Suggestion of General Sid Ross, of Waco. 
— A soldier-boy on the frontier — a leader of Indian 
scouts under Van Dorn while yet a youth — the gallant 
boy Captain who rescued Cynthia Ann Parker after 


twenty-five years captivity — a private soldier winning 
his way up to a Brigadier- Generalship — the hero of 
more than a hundred battles and fights — the modest and 
educated gentleman — for five years the model Sheriff of 
the State, and in the Constitutional Convention display- 
ing the highest qualities of eloquence and enlightened 
statesmanship — why may not his thousands of friends 
present his name for the position of Chief Magistrate of 
the State he has so nobly, and ably, and disinterestedly 
served since he wa3 thirteen years old? Why not? He 
has never intimated such a wish; but his friends claim 
the right to mention his name. Ask the people of the 
whole frontier — ask the people of his large district — ask 
his neighbors — ask the thirty thousand ex- soldiers who 
know his deeds, and see what they all say. They will 
send up one grand'shout for Sul Ross." 

All of which the Telephone endorsed in the following 

"General Ross' sound, practical abilities, are un- 
questioned, and few men are more justly esteemed. We 
believe he would fill any position which he consents to 
accept, with ability, faithfulness, and dignity. We do 
not know, however, that he would consent to become 
an aspirant, this time, for the gubebernatorial office. 
We do know, however, that he will never intrigue or 
scheme for the position ; and, if tendered the nomina- 
tion, it will be a voluntary offering by the State at large, 
without reference to local or personal predilections and 
efforts. Under those circumstances, General Ross 
would make a governor equal to any Texas ever had. 

Such, in brief, is a hasty synopsis of the life of Gen- 
eral L. S. Ross. The foregoing pages of this narrative 
attempt to elaborate some of the incidents in his career 
that won for himself the confidence of his superiors in 
rank, and for his brigade the ecomium of all. Nothing 
like a complete history of Ross, or his brigade, is 
claimed here. At this late day, in the absence of all 
documentary material to use in the construction, that 


desideratum is impossible of attainment; and, with the 
conclusion drawing nigh, the author feels like exclaim- 
ing: The half has not been told; and the fragment here 
preserved falls far short of doing the subject justice! 
Probably, no general officer who commanded troops in 
the late war, drew them in closer sympathy to himself 
than General Ross. Each man of his brigade regarded 
his dashing young chieftain as a personal friend. As 
Junot was prompt to resent a fancied insult to Napoleon, 
so would the troopers of Ross have drawn their sabers 
at any allusion disparaging to their idolized leader. 
Brave unto rashness himself — he had seven horses shot 
under him in the course of the war — yet he was solic- 
itous of the welfare of his men, and all his plans of at- 
tack or defense contained, in an eminent degree, the 
element of prudence. Often, with his skeleton brigade, 
he seemed tempting the wrath of the Fates, and as risk- 
ing all upon a single cast of the die; but no mission of 
danger ever appalled his men, for, following his dash- 
ing and seemingly reckless lead, they again and again 
plucked "the flower safety from the nettle danger." 

In the disastrous retreat of Hood from Nashville, the 
brigades of Ross and Armstrong were the palladiums of 
hope to the discomfited army; and had it not been for 
their interposing shields, Hood's army, as an organiza- 
tion, would have ceased to exist ere a passage of the 
Tennessee river could have been attained. 

A characteristic letter from the General's pen will con- 
clude this sketch of his life — a letter written in the ex- 
pectation that no eye save the author's would ever scan 
its pages — as tending to illustrate somewhat those noble 
qualities of heart that so endeared him to his men. The 
noble sentiments expressed are characteristic of the 

General Ross was recently elected to a seat in the 
State Senate, distancing his competitor by an unparal- 
leled majority, and running two thousand votes ahead 
of his own party ticket. Apropos to General Ross' op- 


position to the "Judical Article" of the State Constitu- 
tion, it is gratifying to his friends to know that five 
years of experience has demonstrated his wisdom in 
pronouncing the article, on the floor of the Convention, 
"wholly inadequate to meet the wants of the great State 
of Texas, and that, as a system, it must prove in the 
end more expensive than the one sought to be displaced." 
As the Democratic party in convention at Dallas de- 
mands, through the "platform," an amendment to the 
Constitution to meet this particular want, a more em- 
phatic and unqualified vindication of General Ross' 
course in the Constitutional Convention could not be 

"Waco, Texas. 
"Victor M. Rose, 

"VictoriX, Texas: 

"My Dear Friend — Your kind letter did not reach me 
promptly, but I hasten to assure you of my approval of 
the commendable work you design. You will probably 
remember that, during the war, Captain Dunn, whose 
health had failed, detailed to write a full and accurate 
history of the operations of the brigade, and I furnished 
him with all necessary data — orders, papers, etc., — so as 
to render his duty of easy compliance; but, unfortunate- 
ly, he died in Alabama, and this information was re- 
ceived, together with that, that my trunk and papers 
entrusted to his care had fallen into the hands of the 
enemy. In my trunk was found twenty stands of colors 
and other trophies which we had captured from the 
Federals. My memory is too defective to be relied up- 
on at this late day for much valuable information, but 
such as I can trust, I will gladly give you; and I feel 
warranted in saying, that Captain Gurley, and others of 
our comrades, will aid you in. your noble work, which, I 
trust, you will not delay for the endorsement of any one. 

"I was glad to hear from you. Indeed, every few 
days, by letters or calls from my noble, brave boys, am 
I assured that they remember me kindly. No church- 


man ever loved to tell his beads as I love to recount 
their valor and their loyalty in the discharge of a sol- 
emnly-conceived duty. Long after I was thoroughly 
satisfied they knew they were being called upon to fol- 
low a "will o' the wisp" to their utter discomfiture — 
naked, footsore, and famished as they were, yet, with 
heroic devotion, they met every peril unflinchingly, and 
encountered every hardship unmurmuringly. \ hope 
steps will be taken soon to bring about a happy reunion 
of all those who are still living, and then we can take 
steps to honor and embalm the memory of the dead. 

"I would be pleased to have suggestions from any, or 
all, of our comrades everywhere, as to the practicability 
of getting up some kind of an organization, and I am 
ready to concur in any plan devised. My health is not 
very good. I contracted a cold from exposure in the 
Mississippi swamp when we were crossing over those 
arms, and it eventually settled on my lungs, and from 
that time I have suffered much from bronchitis, and 
have often thought consumption would ensue. I am 
farming, and making enough to provide for the wants of 
myself and wife, and six children. Happily, my early 
training upon the frontier, among the early pioneers of 
Texas, inculcated no very extravagant desires. Please 
remember me to all my "boys," and tell them that if we 
are never permitted to meet en. masse on this earth, when 
we "cross over the river" we shall enjoy a grand and 
glorious reunion, and have a long, long time to talk it 
all over. 

Ci \ T ery truly your friend, 
"[Signed] "L. S. ROSS." 


Whereas, since the last reunion of the survivors of 
Ross' Texas Brigade, we have been called to mourn the 
death of many of our comrades, which we realize as a 
constant reminder that we too must soon cross over the 


river to join those comrades who have gone before. Yet, 
while we remain on the lands where we have fought 
life's battle, ties of friendship bind our hearts in memo- 
ries that are sweet in the bitter past, and our tears fall 
in sympathy with those bereaved. 

Therefore, be it Resolved, That deep sympathy be ex- 
tended by this Association, to the relatives of our de- 
parted comrades. 

And that, in the death of our leader, Gen. L. S. Ross, 
his family have lost a kindred endeared by all the ties of 
a loving nature, his friends lose a pleasant companion 
and Texas loses one of her best and most honored citi- 
zens, whose strong arm was ever ready to defend her 
institutions and whose counsels have been freely given 
in shaping her wisest and best policies. And we, of the 
Ross Brigade, will mingle our tears with those who weep 
for we realize that we have lost a brave commander, a 
wise counselor, a true comrade, and faithful friend, in 
the death of Gen. Laurance Sulivan Ross. 




In that galaxy of glorious stars, whose effulgence yet 
lights the memory of the "Lost Cause," though its sun 
has forever set, none shines with a steadier glow than 
that consecrated to the name and fame of John S. 
Griffith. Where palladins seemed to contend in gener- 
ous emulation for the plaudits of fame, and individual 
heroism was the daily rule, it would seem invidious to 
make distinctions. But we can accord all the honors, 
that are so eminently his due, to this gifted son of Tex- 
as, without the disparagement of any one. 

Unselfish in his characteristics ; brave, though saga- 
cious, as becomes a commander; patriotic in all his im- 
pulses; had health been vouchsafed to him, a career of 
glory and usefulness would have crowned his efforts with 
success. As it was, by his consummate address on the 
hardly -contested field of Oakland, and as the central 
figure of the Holly Springs campaign, he gave ample 
evidence that he possessed, in a pre-eminent degree, 
those lofty, necessary qualities that can only fit a man 
for command in battle. General Griffith was more than 
a dashing cavalryman, for his analytical mind pene- 
trated far beyond the immediate shock of battle, and 
took in the salient features of the campaign as a whole. 
It was he who conceived that master stroke of policy, 
and was the the most efficient agent of its execution — 

the Holly Springs Raid." He saved the army of 



Pemberton, indubitably, by the movement; and, conse- 
quently, delayed the fall of Vicksburg many months. 
On the field of Oakland, he performed for the same army 
duties, of scarce less vital moment. But we anticipate. 
John S. Griffith was born in Montgomery county, Mary- 
land, on the 17th day of June, A. D. 1829. His father, 
Michael B. Griffith, was the son of Captain Henry 
Griffith, of the Revolutionary army, and a lineal de- 
scendrnt of the historical Llewellen ap Griffith, of 
Wales. To the influence of his pious mother, who was 
a daughter of General Jeremiah, and Elizabeth Crabb, a 
beautiful, cultured, and accomplished lady, whose en- 
ergy, will, and fortitude were sufficient to surmount the 
many obstacles and misfortunes that beset her path 
amid the vicissitudes of life, the subject of this sketch 
has ever attributed whatever success, under Provi- 
dence, he has achieved. His parents started in life in 
affluent circumstances. But forced by some losses in 
his business (mercantile) Mr. Griffith removed to Jeffer- 
son City, Missouri, in the year 1835 ; and from the lat- 
ter place to Portland, Missouri, in 1837. Misfortune 
attended all his efforts to improve the long series of 
losses, until, when reduced to the paltry capital of one 
thousand dollars, he removed, April 15th, 1836, to San 
Augustine county, Texas, with a family of six children, 
three of whom were girls. 

In common with the pioneers of early Texas coloniza- 
tion, theirs was a lot of hardship and privation. Flour 
cost twenty-five dollars per barrel, and bacon fifty cents 
per pound. In this situation of affairs, which would 
have impaired the energies of a man more accustomed 
to the smiles of success, the father seemed for a spac© 
to despond; but the heroic wife and mother rose super- 
ior to the occasion, and her high qualities of energy and 
endurance — and above all, hope eternal, though its 
realization had been so often deferred, shone with a 
noon -tide glow that promised to dispel the lowering 
clouds of adversity that hovered above the devoted 


heads of her little ones. Such a mother ! It is wonder- 
ful that her heroic son should now recall, with moistened 
eye, her unequal struggle in that frontier home? Her 
example, though subserving its immediate objects, had 
a result far more distant and lasting, for it molded in 
the nature of the boy the admirable qualities that made 
John S. Griffith a leader of men. How true is the say- 
ing of the great Napoleon, that the mother's qualities, 
good or bad, are always imparted to the son! 

This struggle with adversity was accepted without a 
murmur by young John S., the second son, and, doubt- 
less, he there learned many practical lessons, which 
had much to do in forming the character of the man. 
He received, chiefly, at home, the rudiments of an En- 
glish education ; and, in 1850, commenced business as a 
clerk in a mercantile establishment. In the following: 
year, he set up on his own account as a merchant, 
operating wholly on borrowed capital. Thanks to his 
industry and economy, the business prospered remark- 
ably; and our young merchant, in December, 1857, was 
united in marriage to Miss Emily, daughter of John J. 
and Mrs. Jane Simpson, of Nacogdoches county, Texas. 
His business affairs continuing to prosper, he removed, 
in the year 1859, to Kaufman county, where he engaged 
in the raising of live stock in connection with his mer- 
cantile pursuits. 

At the sound of the first tocsin of war, in 1861, Capt. 
John S. Griffith was called to the command of a volun- 
teer company of cavalry raised at Rockwall, Texas. 
Captain Griffith tendered the services of his company 
to Colonel E. Greer, whose regiment, the Third Texas 
Cavalry, however, was already full. So ardent were 
the Rockwall boys, that their liberal Captain offered 
Colonel Greer to defray their expenses for three months 
out of his own purse, if allowed to become attached to 
.the regiment for that space. Why they were not al- 
lowed to do so, and as many other companies as de- 
sired, must always remain a mystery — seeing that Gen. 


Price was being driven out of Missouri by an over- 
whelming Federal force, and that General McCulloch, 
with a few Arkansas militia, was awaiting the arrival of 
the only two regiments coming to his assistance, the 
Third Texas Cavalry and Third Louisiana Infantry. 
Of course, Colonel Greer had no option in the premises, 
as his authority extended no further than the organiza- 
tion and command of his own regiment. But it is of in- 
terest to discover right here, at the inception of the con- 
test, the commencement of that fatal series of malad- 
ministration which contributed more to the wreck of the 
Confederate cause than the armies of the invader. The 
battle of Oak Hills was won through a combination of 
fortuitous circumstances; and the South relapsed into 
fancied security. Had we been beaten there, the re- 
sult may have aroused the Southern administrations to 
a sense of the magnitude of the struggle in which they 
were actors, or hastened the final catastrophe; either of 
which conclusions was preferable to the protracted, 
often desultory, and seemingly hopeless manner in 
which the war was waged on the part of the South. 

But Captain Griffith had not long to wait; as soon as 
Colonel B. Warren Stone commenced the organiza- 
tion of the gallant old Sixth Texas Cavalry, the Rock- 
wall boys were incorporated in this regiment as Comp- 
any B. and was officered as follows: 

John S. Griffith, Captain. 

Amos Dye, First Lieutenant. 

E. P. Chisholm, Second Lieutenant. 
James Truett, Third Lieutenant. 

F. M. Nixon, Orderly-Sergeant. 
M. B. Cannon, Second Sergeant. 
A. C. Richardson, Third Sergeant. 
F. Chisum, Fourth Sergeant. 

A. W. Hedges, First Corporal. 

A. Cummins, Second Corporal. 

B. L. Williams, Third Corporal. 
John R. Briscoe, Fourth Corporal. 


John 0. Heath, Ensign. 

Allen Anrick, Bugler. 
Upon the organization of the regiment, Captain Grif- 
fith, who was already a popular favorite with his com- 
rades, was elected Lieutenant-Colonel. The regiment 
proceeded, as elsewhere stated in these pages, to Ar- 
kansas, and reported for duty to General Ben McCul- 
loch. The service here consisted of foraging, scouting 
expeditions, picket duty, etc, ; though the gallant Price 
and his immortal "Old Guard" were struggling under 
the "Grizzly Bears" against overwhelming odds. Had 
the Texans been consulted, they would have sped to the 
assistance of their struggling Missouri allies. In De- 
cember, 1861, Colonel Mcintosh, in command of a bat- 
talion, each from the Third and Sixth Texas Cavalry, 
the former commanded by Lieutenant- Colonel W. P. 
Lane, and the latter by Lieutenant- Colonel J. S. Grif- 
fith, Whitfield's (Texas) Battalion, and Young's Regi- 
ment, Eleventh Texas Cavalry, and a battalion of First 
Arkansas Cavalry, marched to the relief of General 
Cooper, who was being driven back by superior forces 
of hostile Indians. The enemy was encountered on the 
heights of Chustenahla, and routed (as elsewhere de- 
tailed). The following letter from the gallant and he- 
roic General W. P. Lane will be of interest: 

"Marshall, Texas, February 4, 1881. 
"Victor M. Rose, Esq.: 

"My Dear Sir — I delayed answering your letter, hop- 
ing to find some one more conversant with the incidents 
of our fight at Chustenahlah than myself: but failing to 
find any one who would volunteer to do so, I will en- 
deavor to present my recollections of the campaign. On 
Christmas day, 1861, we moved from camp to attack the 
Indians, who, we learned, were some ten miles distant. 
Our force consisted of battallions of Third, Sixth and 
Eleventh Texas Cavalry, and Captain Bennett's com- 
pany, all under command of Mcintosh. My battalion 
being in advance, I detached Captain D. M. Short, with 


thirty men, to reconnoitre, and to drive back a small 
party that the enemy had sent out to review us. Finally, 
Captain Short sent me word that the Indians were post- 
ed on the hills in force, and were complacently awaiting 
our attack. Colonel Mcintosh then placed his force in 
the following order: Sixth Texas, Lieutenant-Colonel 
Griffith commanding, on the right; Third Texas, 
Lieutenant-Colonel "W. P. Lane command- 
ing, in the center; the Eleventh Texas Cavalry, 
Colonel Young commanding, together with Bennett's 
company, on the left. He then ordered me, with the 
Third, to charge the hill on horseback. The hill was 
very steep, and just possible for a horse to ascend. I 
replied that I would do so with pleasure; and added, 
'but if I do not carry the position?' He replied, that, in 
that event, he would dispatch the Sixth and Eleventh to 
to my aid. I replied, 'All right, but if I do not carry the 
position I will be at the bottom before the re -enforce- 
ments can arrive.' I gave the order for the men to dis- 
mount and tighten girths. I then informed the boys 
that when the command to charge was given, the 
quicker we got among the Indians the fewer empty sad- 
dles we would have. We charged in good style, carry- 
ing the hill, and throwing the Indians into confusion. At 
the same time, Colonel Griffith, on my right, and with- 
out orders, led his battalion in a gallant charge, and the 
Eleventh, and Captain Bennett's company, simulta- 
neously swept around the hill on the left, thus com- 
pleting the discomfiture of the enemy. Our loss was 
small ; some eight or ten killed, and eighteen or twenty 
wounded. In my battalion, Lieutenant Durham was 
mortally wounded, and Major G. W. Chilton slightly. 
The battle effectually broke up the Indians. We took 
several hundred prisoners, horses, cattle, sheep, and 
other property, too numerous to mention. 

"Yours, truly, "WALTER P. LANE." 

When Colonel Mcintosh placed the Sixth in position 
on the right of the line, his instructions to Colonel 


Griffith were to await further orders. But Colonel 
Griffith, seeing the intrepid charge of Lane had dis- 
lodged the Indians, who were retiring across a deep 
gulch to the right, very correctly decided that the op- 
portune moment had arrived for striking a decisive 
blow. Not a moment was to be lost; and, with saber in 
the left and revolver in the right hand, he led his com- 
mand in a dashing charge over a seemingly impassable 
ravine, and spurred his horse up its almost precipitous 
banks, and was the first of the command to engage in 
the desperate hand-to-hand encounter that ensued. 
Emptying his revolver, he borrowed another of one of 
his captains, and continued the running fight until it 
was also emptied, when he had recourse to his saber. 
During the melee, Colonel Griffith became separated from 
his men, and encountered an Indian who was loading 
his rifle. The Colonel charged upon him, and the In- 
dian recognizing the absence of fear in his opponent, 
seized his gun as a club. It had been the intention of 
Griffith to run him through with his saber as he passed 
him; but now decided to ride him down; and with that 
purpose reined his horse full upon him, but the Indian 
agilely stepped aside, and aimed a tremenduous blow at 
his opponent, which knocked the plumed hat of the 
Colonel to the ground. But simultaneously with the 
Indian's blow Griffith dealt him a terrible stroke with 
his saber on the side of the head. Lieutenant Vance 
opportunely came up and dispatched the Indian. 

Griffith now, after a hasty survey of the field, dis- 
covered that the enemy were re-forming their lines upon 
an eminence in front; and that his own men were scat- 
tered, every one acting on his own hook. The rally 
was sounded, and line of battle being formed, when 
Captain J. W. Throckmorton (since Governor of Texas) 
rode up to the Colonel and informed him that Lieuten- 
ant Gabe Fitzhugh had fallen. Colonel Griffith loved 
his brave young subaltern, and the announcement of 
his untimely death brought a tear to his eye. "Com- 


rades!" he exclaimed to the eager men, "Fitzhugh has 
been killed, and there are his slayers!" About three 
hundred of the Indians now occupied the rocky emi- 
nence in front, and were fully prepared for the threat- 
ened attack. "Forward, my brave men!' exclaimed 
the Colonel, as at their head he dashed up the steep, and 
among the painted, howling savages, as trusty rifles and 
repeating pistols were dashing out lives on every side. 
The men, animated by the ardor of their commander, 
and by the recklessness of his bearing, fought as if the 
issue depended upon each individual's exertion. Driven 
from this position, it was only to retire a short distance 
and take up another position ; and thus four separate 
charges brought Griffith and his gallant rangers into a 
hand-to-hand contest with the enemy. 

At four o'clock in the afternoon Griffith called in his 
weary men. They had been engaged incessantly since 
morning, and were now six miles from the heights of 
Chustenahlah, where Colonel Lane had so gallantly 
opened the ball. The enemy had had enough, and 
were in full retreat. In returning, Colonel Griffith gath- 
ered up many wagons, teams, ponies, and other live 
stock, together with many negroes, women and children, 
and arrived at camp about night fall. Colonel Griffith 
soon reported to Colonel Mcintosh to apologize for his 
disobedience of orders. Said Griffith: "Colonel Mc- 
intosh, I felt so well assured that you would have or- 
dered me to do just what I did, had you been present, 
that I unhesitatingly assumed the responsibility; and 
since the merit of the move has been tested by its suc- 
cess, I shall in my official report of the engagement 
state that I moved in conformity to your direction." 
Mcintosh replied that success was vindication ; and he 
further took occasion to compliment the gallantry of 
Griffith throughout the series of actions. This compli- 
ment coming from a man absolutely a stranger to fear, 
was no idle frame work of unmeaning words, 

In the battle of battles, for it was a series of separate 


encounters, or Chustenahlah, Colonel Griffith had his 
horse shot under him, his clothing was perforated by 
rifle balls, and a tuft of his whiskers shot away ; yet, 
Saladin-like, as if bearing a talismanic charm, he es- 
caped unhurt, save the blow received with the clubbed 
rifle, at the hands of the Indian. 

At the reorganization of the regiment, near Corinth, 
in May 1862, Colonel Griffith, against the solicitations of 
many friends, and, possibly, in violence to the prompt- 
ings of a commendable ambition, declined to become a 
candidate for the Colonelcy, and was re-elected to his 
former position of Lieutenant- Colonel. Colonel Griffith 
took this decision in consequence of failing health, and 
the necessity of his visiting home for a brief space; it 
being understood, at the time, that the Lieutenant-Col- 
onel, or Major, would be detailed to return to Texas on 
recruiting service. 

During General Price's retreat from Abbyville, the 
Federal General, Washburn, at the head of a consider- 
able force, undertook to intercept the retreat, by march- 
ing upon the rear of the Confederate position, and 
threatened the trains and wounded of Price's corps. 
Colonel Griffith commanded the Texas Brigade at the 
time, and attacked Washburn on the field at Oakland, 
inflicting a heavy loss on him, and driving him from the 
field — (vide battle of Oakland). For the daring gal- 
lantry displayed on this occasion, he was the recipient 
of complimentary letters from Generals Maury, Price, 
Jackson and others. The result of the battle at Oak- 
land gave General Price an open road to Grenada, 
which town he reached in safety, and his weary men 
were soon seeking the respite from toil, vigilance, and 
privation, which they so much needed. The campaign 
was now virtually concluded for the winter; and Colo- 
nels Broocks and Griffith often conversed upon the most 
profitable employment that the cavalry could be as- 
signed to. It was self-evident, that, as matters now 
stood, they were only consuming the supplies that- 


should be economized for the infantry, which was less 
able to forage independently. They agreed that the 
Confederate cavalry, of the Army of the West, should 
be "massed," and moved into the enemy's lines, where 
they could repel all smaller bodies, and escape any 
force too strong to encounter in battle. Thus was the 
system of heavy cavalry-raiding first advocated. Colo- 
nel Griffith adopted this conclusion, and sought ot ap- 
ply it practically to the existing situation of affairs. The 
Confederate army, beaten in battle, outnumbered by the 
enemy in the ratio of five to one, poorly clad, poorly fed, 
pay in arrears, was discontented, not to say demoralized. 
General U. S. Grant confronted them at the head of a 
force that was puissant; and the coming spring must 
inevitably witness another contest against fearful odds, 
and the army of the West Tennessee again defeated, 
driven into Vicksburg, where its doom would be but a 
question of time. Colonel Griffith became convinced 
that of Grant's long line of communication, with his 
base of supplies at Memphis, the most vulnerable point 
was Holly Springs, at which place immense quantities 
of army stores had been collected, and a garrison of 
about 2,500 men left to guard it. Griffith brooded over 
this subject, and reviewed it in every conceivable light. 
A cavalry corps should be organized; the enemy's rear 

entered, and Holly Springs taken, and all the supplies 
destroyed; then the railroad should be destroyed as far 
in the direction of Memphis as possible. Surely this 
would draw Grant out of Mississippi, and give the Con- 
federate authorities ample time to devise some plan for 
the defense of the country, and to concentrate sufficient 
forces with which to execute it. Becoming assured of 
the feasibility of his project, Colonel Griffith determined 
to broach the subject to the Commanding General, 
Lieutenant-General J. C. Pemberton, although he had 
no acquaintance with him. To this end, he drew up the 


following letter, which many of the field officers of the 
brigade also signed at his invitation : 

''Head -quarters Texas Brigade, 
"Camp Wharton, Miss., December 5, 1862. 

"Lieutenant -General J. C. Pemberton: 

"The undersigned, officers of the First Texas Brigade 
of Cavalry, disclaiming any desire to dictate to the 
Commanding General my plan, or line of operations he 
should pursue, would yet beg leave modestly to sug- 
gest the propriety of a cavalry expedition into the ene- 
my's rear. We are the more bold to do so, and have 
less fear of the misconstruction of our motives, when we 
remember that you have been so recently placed in 
command over us; and that the multitudinous cares in- 
cidental to your responsible position have necessarily, 
thus far, precluded an examination of the position of the 
enemy, and as to what is the best employment in which 
the cavalry under your command, could be engaged. 
We, therefore, respectfully submit, if you will fit up a 
cavalry expedition, comprising' three or four thousand 
men, and give us Major -General Earl Van Dorn, than 
whom no braver man lives, to command us, we will pen- 
etrate the rear of the enemy, capture Holly Springs, 
Memphis, and other points, and, perhaps, force him to 
retreat from Coffeevilie; if not, we can certainly force 
more of the enemy to remain in their rear, to protect 
their supplies, than the cavalry cloud whip if we re- 
mained at the front. 

"Very respectfully, 

"Commanding Texas Cavalry Brigade. 

"Commanding First Texas Legion. 

"Major First Texas Legion. 

"Lieut. -Colonel Third Texas Cavalry. 


"Lieut. -Colonel Commd'g Ninth Texas Cavalry. 

"Captain Commanding Sixth Texas Cavalry." 
Colonel Griffith forwarded this letter immediately to 
General Pemberton, and, no one not acquainted with 
the restless energy of the man, can imagine the night of 
consuming anxiety and suspense that he passed in 
awaiting a reply. To his sagacious mind, the memorial 
suggested the last card left the Confederacy to play 
with any chance of winning on this board. The Army of 
West Tennessee must be inevitably crushed whenever 
Grant should place his legions in motion to execute the 
fiat of his will. General Pemberton promptly replied 
the next day, in the following letter : 

"Headquarters Department Mississippi, 

"Grenada, December 6, 1862. 

"You will furnish me with a report of the events sub- 
sequent to the engagement of Oakland. I wish to see 
you personally, if circumstances will possibly admit of 

"Very respectfully, 


Lieutenant-General.' ' 
The Commanding General desired a personal inter- 
view with the bold ranger who dared to chalk out a 
campaign to his chief. In the interview which followed, 
General Pemberton informed Colonel Griffith, that the 
proposition commended itself to his consideration w T ith 
much force, and that he would give it careful considera- 
tion, etc. 

About the 12th, or six days after the interview with 
General Pemberton, Colonel Griffith received 
others to report to General Van Dorn, who was now 
actively engaged in preparing for the long desired ex- 
pedition in rear of the enemy. General Van Dorn's 
command consisted of the Texas Brigade, Colonel Grif- 


fith commanding, 1,500 men; Jackson's Tennessee 
Brigade, 1,200 men; McCuIloch's Missouri Brigade, 
800 men. The whole amounting to about 3,500 men. 
For an account of this famous expedition, the reader is 
referred to the proper chapter in the body of the narra- 

The services exacted of him, on this expedition, 
proved so great a demand upon his vital forces that the 
health of Colonel Griffith/ never robust, was seriously 
impaired; and, in the summer of 1863, he tendered his 
resignation, and returned to Texas. 

The following testimonial from the officers of the 
"Whitfield Legion," will serve to show, in some degree, 
the esteem in which Colonel Griffith was held by his 
comrades : 

"Camp First Texas Legion, 
"Near Spring Hill, Tennessee, May 10, 1863. 

"Lieutenant-Colonel John S. Griffith: 

"Dear Sir — We, the undersigned, officers of the First 
Texas Legion, having learned that, in consequence of 
continued ill health, you have tendered your resigna- 
tion, we can not, in justice to our feelings, permit you 
to quit the service without this testimonial of our ap- 
preciation of your services while commanding the brig- 
ade, of which our regiment is a part. You were ever 
the faithful and efficient officer, and, at the same time, 
the kind and courteous gentleman. Rest assured, sir, 
that whether you go to some other branch of our coun- 
try's service, or to your home in the State that we all 
love so well, you will carry with you the confidence and 
esteem of the officers and men of the First Texas Le- 
gion. With heart-felt wishes for your future welfare, 
we remain respectfully, 

"Lieut. -Colonel Commanding Legion. 

"Major Texas Legion. 


* "Captain Company E, First Texas Legion. 

"Company M, First Texas Legion. 

"Captain Co. A, First Texas Legion. 

"Captain Co. C, First Texas Legion. 

"First Lieutenant Co. A, Texas Legion. 

"Second Lieutenant Co. A, Texas Legion," 
Upon his return to Texas, Colonel Griffith was elected 
a member of the Tenth Legislature, in which body he 
occupied the responsible position of Chairman of the 
Committee on Military Affairs. On March 1st, 1864, he 
was appointed Brigadier -General of State troops, by 
Governor P. Murrah, and placed in command of Dis- 
trict No. 2, which was composed of the counties of 
Kaufman, Ellis, Navarro, Hill, McLennan, Limestone, 
Freestone, Leon, Robertson, Falls, Bell, Williamson, 
Milam, Burleson, Brazos, Madison, Coryell, Bosque, 
Erath, Hamilton, Comanche, Lampasas, San Saba, 
Brown, Eastland, Callahan, Coleman, McCulloch, Ma- 
son, Kimble, Menard, Concho, Runnels, Taylor and 
Johnston. The duties of the Brigadier-Generals of the 
State were, "to encourage and form volunteer compa- 
nies and organizations, of such persons as are not sub- 
ject to militia or other duty, for local defense, and all 
necessary police regulations in the counties where such 
companies may be raised." In his efficient and faith- 
ful discharge of the onerous duties encumbent on him 
in this position, Colonel Griffith elicited the compli- 
mentary mention of Governor Murrah, in his message to 
the Eleventh Legislature. General Griffith continued in 
command of the "Second District" until the termination 
of hostilities. 

The result of the war left him comparatively poor, he 

ft&E GREAT WAft. 34 f 

having some twenty-five or thirty slaves; but, with in- 
domitable will, energy, and pluck, upon which his vital 
forces expend themselves, General Griffith entered the 
race of life again, and, by dint of industry and good 
sense, he has accumulated a handsome fortune, and re- 
sides in Terrell, Kaufmann county, Texas, once more in 
affluent circumstances. 

In 1876, he was elected a member of the Fifteenth 
Legislature, upon which body devolved the duty of plac- 
ing in operation the "new constitution." He was ap- 
pointed Chairman of the Committee on Public Printing, 
and was sucessful in defeating the printer in an effort to 
obtain illegitimate gains at the expense of the State. So 
assiduous were his labors in this body, that he earned 
the reputation of being an industrious and untiring leg- 
islator. He was, indeed, a "watch-dog" over the pub- 
lic treasury; and lobbyists, shysters, chevaliers cV Indus- 
trie, shunned him as if his presence was a fatal upas. 
He was attacked in the newspapers by the printer, who 
became exasperated at being foiled in his "little game." 
Griffith responded, and demonstrated the proposed 
fraud; and, backed by the opinion of the Attorney -Gen- 
eral, he had the satisfaction of seeing the "printer" 
leave the ring demolished in reputation, and all his cal- 
culations "pied." Several statutes bear the impress of 
his statesmanship — especially that one making drunk- 
enness in civil officers a misdemeanor. This statute 
alone is a living monument to his probity of character, 
and is a work of which he may justly feel proud. 

In conclusion, but little remains to be said. General 
Griffith is yet, comparatively, a young man ; and the 
author, his friend, hopes that he may be spared, by the 
grim specter of the glass and scythe, yet many years, in 
which event, he will make much more biography for the 
second sitting. General Griffith is a gentleman of pleas- 
ing address, and his heart is as big as Texas, and as 
open as his sleeve ; of an ardent temperament, he is of- 
ten impulsive, but never rash nor unjust; his mind is 


acute, penetrating, and sagacious, and thoroughly ana- 
lytical in the examination of practical details, while his 
judgment is clear and perspicuous. In short, General 
Griffith is a Napoleonic embodiment of restless energy 
and indomitable will, guided by an equally balanced 
mind, who would not have occupied a subordinate posi- 
tion in whatever sphere of life his lot had been cast. In 
the management of his private estate, he has proved 
himself to be a consummate business manager — com- 
mencing with nothing, and having accumulated two for- 

In his conduct of the operations of the command at 
Oakland, Chustenahlah, and Holly Springs, he appeared 
to the world as a natural-born general, and overlapped 
West Point in its own^peculiar province. As a legislator 
he stood primus inter pares, and left the lobby-lined 
chambers with hands unsmirched and reputation clean. 
Though unsolicitous for office, and retiring in his dis- 
position, General Griffith would shed honor on the chief 
magistracy of the State, and his administration of the 
people's affairs would certainly be in the interest of the 
people. The following anecdote is illustrative of the 
General's impetuosity : Upon one occasion he was de- 
tailing the exciting scenes attendant upon the Confeder- 
ate entry into Holly Springs, and especially the earnest 
welcome extended the rebels by the ladies, when his 

auditor asked: "And how did you feel, General?" 
"Feel!" exclaimed the excited veteran: "I felt as if I 
could have charged hell, and captured the devil, if the 
Almighty had commanded me to do so!" Of one thing 
certain, if the General ever does enlist under the banner 
of the Lord, he will be one of the last to think of giving 
up the fort, for he goes into every thing with his whole 
soul — he is never a half-measure man. 

As a further testimonial of the regard in which Gen- 
eral Griffith was held by his brother- officers, the follow- 


ing letters, from the gallant Jackson, will speak for it- 

"Head -quarters First Cavalry Corps, 

"Spring Hill, Teen., May 8, 1863. 
"Lieut. -Colonel J. S. Griffith: 

"Colonel — Permit me to offer the testimonial of my 
high appreciation of you as a gallant, competent, and 
meritorious officer of unexceptional moral character. It 
affords me great pleasure to refer to the valuable ser- 
vices rendered by your command at Oakland, Missis- 
sippi, in repulsing, and routing, a superior force of the 
enemy, advancing upon Grenada, and thereby saving 
our retreating army; also the gallant and signal service 
of yourself, while we were together, and commanding 
separate brigades, on the raid to Holly Springs and 
West Tennessee. Please accept the assurances of my 
highest consideration, and with many regrets that your 
continued ill-health compels you to leave this corps, 
and a wish that you may soon regain your health suf- 
ficiently to enter the service again. 

"I remain, very respectfully, 

"Brigadier- General Commanding Cavalry Corps," 




General J. W. Whitfield was born in Williamson 
connty, Tennessee, in the year 1818, and received such 
limited education as the "log school- house" of the time 
afforded. Early in life he pursued the calling of a 
farmer, but his strong individuality, and marked charac- 
ter, soon called him to public station ; and, for eighteen 
years with scarce an intermission, he represented his 
district in both branches of the State Legislature. He 
served, with marked gallantry, through the Mexican 
war, and upon its cessation, was appointed Indian Agent 
to the wild tribes in Kansas. General Whitfield was a 
resident of Kansas at the inception of the slavery troubles 
attendant upon the application of that State for admis- 
sion into the Union, espousing the pro-slavery side of 
the controversy. Whitfield was the first delegate sent 
from Kansas to the Federal Congress, defeating the 
anti- slavery candidate, Reeder, by a handsome major- 
ity. In the turbulent era of murder and pillage that en- 
sued, the greater portion of his property was swept away ; 
and when, finally, Kansas was given over to abolition- 
ism, Whitfield, impoverished, removed to Lavaca county, 
Texas, and resumed the avocation of a farmer. The 
rude blast of internecine war however, soon broke upon 
the quiet scene of his pastoral life, and the brave old 
veteran responded by buckling on his sword, and sum- 
moning his neighbors to follow him. Starting out as a 


captain of a company, his command was augmented to 
a battalion of four companies by the time he reached 
General McCulloch's quarters. During, and after the 
campaign that culminated in the battle of Elk Horn, his 
battalion was increased to a legion of twelve companies, 
than which, there was not a braver, or more efficient, 
organization in the Confederate army. General Whit- 
field relinquished the command of the brigade in 1863, 
and retired to the Trans -Mississippi Department. In 
personal appearance, General Whitfield was marked, 
being over six feet in height, and straight as an arrow — 
he looked every inch the soldier. Of his service in the 
Trans-Mississippi Department, the author has no data 
upon which to predicate a narrative. 

After the termination of the war, General Whitfield 
continued to reside on his farm, near the village of 
Vienna, in Lavaca county, Texas, engaged in peaceful 
pursuit through the evening of life, until the autumn of 
1879, when he responded to the summons of the specter 
with the hour-glass and scythe, and took up his solitary 
march across the river into that undiscovered country 
in which his departed comrades had pitched their silent 
camp. There, with Van Dorn, McCulloch, Mcintosh, 
Jones, and others, he awaited the arrival of the rear- 
guard upon the scene to complete the grand re-union of 
the Texas Brigade, in the shade of the lotus-trees of 
the Summerland. 




Colonel D. W. Jones was, it is thought, a native Texan, 
and was born about the year 1842, as he was but eigh- 
teen years of age at -the commencement of the war. 

At the first notes of the approaching storm, he quitted 
his studies at Maury Institute, Columbia, Tennessee, 
and proceeded to his home at Mt. Pleasant, Titus 
county, Texas. He entered the Ninth Texas Cavalry, 
Colonel W. B. Sims, commanding, it is thought, as a 
private soldier, and served as such during the first year 
of the war, through the campaign in the Indian Territory 
and in Missouri. 

Upon the re- organization of the Ninth Texas regi- 
ment, near Corinth, Mississippi, in 1862, though a beard- 
less boy of scarce twenty years of age, D. W. Jones was 
triumphantly elected Colonel of the regiment; and that 
he was worthy to be the recipient of this very high honor, 
the author can bear positive testimony, based upon per- 
sonal observation. 

It was a familiar sight, in the "Army of the West," to 
see the bronzed and bearded faces of the veterans of the 
gallant old Ninth following the lead of their handsome 
and chivalrous boy Colonel. The losses of this regi- 
ment were unusually severe, and, at the close of the 
struggle, nine out of every ten men, who had started, 
failed to respond at roll-call. 

The author again expresses deep regret that he was 


unable, after the most assiduous efforts, to obtain data 
upon which to recount the immediate services of the 

Colonel Jones served in the first Constitutional Con- 
vention of Texas after the war, and died soon afterward 
in the city of Houston, where he lies buried in a neg- 
lected grave. 

Peace to his ashes ! 




Colonel Jack Wharton was born December 1, 1832, in 
Washington county, Maryland, and, at an early age, 
studied law under the celebrated Otho Scott, prac- 
ticing his profession until 1857, with consider- 
able success in th8 courts of his native State. At this 
period, he located in Kansas, where the political feeling 
was of such a nature, that no Southern man, with any 
degree of pride for the land of his nativity, could rise in 
his profession. With all the vim and vitality of a man 
determined not to be subdued by the passions and pre- 
judices of this eventful period, he started for Salt Lake 
City, in 1858, with General Harney, who being ordered 
back, he left for California under Captain W. S. Han- 
cock — now Major- General — acting as Quartermaster of 
the Sixth Regiment of Infantry. 

After remaining some time in California, he returned 
to Baltimore, where he remained several months, visit- 
ing old friends. It was at this period he established, in 
Texas, an extensive horse ranch, on the line of Kauf- 
man and Van Zandt counties, about two hundred miles 
west of Shreveport. Here he remained until the war 
commenced, when he enlisted, as a private soldier, in a 
company organized in his neighborhood, and which, 
subsequently, became attached to the Sixth Texas Cav- 
alry. Upon the definite organization of the company, 
Wharton was elected Captain. Henceforth, the history 


of the man, and of the regiment, are indissoluble. He 
served through all the campaigns, battles, advances, 
and retreats in which the regiment and brigade were en- 
gaged, until the final catastrophe. Upon the appoint- 
ment of General L. S. Ros3 to the rank of Brigadier- 
General, Wharton, who had been elected Lieutenant- 
Colonel of the regiment, was promoted to the Colonelcy. 
After the conclusion of the war, he returned to his stock 
ranche in Texas, where he remained until 1867, when he 
was invited by the Southern Pacific Railroad company, 
to take charge of their works from Shreveport, Louisi- 
ana, to Marshall, Texas, with head- quarters at the 
former place. After the completion of the railroad, he 
came to New Orleans, where he has resided since 1868. 
Colonel Wharton has held many important offices of 
honor and trust in the State — such as- Assessor of Tax- 
es, Secretary of State under Governor Warmouth, Ad- 
jutant-General under Governor Kellogg, which place 
he held until the meeting of the Packard Legislature, 
when he resigned the office of Adjutant-General, and ac- 
cepted the position of Clerk of the Superior Civil Court, 
an office just created, and which was the most lucrative 
in the gift of the Governor. After the downfall of the 
Packard Government, he was appointed, by President 
Hayes, Marshal for the State of Louisiana, from June 
15, 1878, which office he holds at the present time, and 
for four years from the date of commission. Colonel 
Wharton has an agreeable personal appearance, is a 
fluent conversationalist, and always a boon companion, 
and welcomed by bon vivants. As an officer in the 
field, he was surpassed by none in personal courage, 
sagacity, and devotion. We believe the Colonel never 




The subject of this sketch was born in the town of 
Jackson, county of Madison, State of Tennessee, October 
12, A. D., 1829; was the son of the late General Travis 
G. Broocks — a native of Virginia — and of Mrs. Elizabeth 
A. Broocks, a native of Alabama, General Broocks re- 
moved with his family, to San Augustine, Texas, in the 
year 1837. John H. was educated at the Wesley an 
College, at San Augustine, and at the San Augustine 
University. His acquaintance, however, with the prac- 
tical relations of life, was formed in the counting-room 
of his father, who did an extensive mercantile business 
in San Augustine. At the commencement of the Mexi- 
can war, young Broocks joined, as a private soldier, the 
company of Captain O. M. Wheeler, of Colonel Woods' 
regiment of Texas Cavalry, and rendered efficient 
services in this new and stirring field of operations un- 
til the cessation of hostilities. Returning home, Mr. 
Broocks entered into the mercantile business at San Au- 
gustine, at which place he continued to reside until 
about the year 1852, when the spirit of adventure and 
enterprise led him to migrate to Calafornia in company 
of his brother, the late Captain James A. Broocks, and 
Captain A. D. Edwards, now of Terrell, Texas. In this 
virgin field, the young Texans first essayed mining, and 
then worked as hired hands on a hay and small grain 
farm ; and, finally, as merchants, operating under the 


firm name of J. H. Broocks & Co., at "Shaw's Flat," in 
Ptoulumne county. While in this business, they did 
their own freighting with ox-teams, over execrable roads 
a distance of sixty- five miles. 

Having been quite successful in his business pursuits, 
Mr. Broocks returned to San Augustine, Texas, in 1854, 
and was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth J. Polk. 
In 1855, he retired from mercantile pursuits to his farm 
near San Augustine, where he has continued to reside 
ever since. When Texas called upon her sons to march 
to battle in defence of constitutional government, in 
1861, she found not one more ready to respond to the 
summons than John H. Broocks. A company was 
formed in San Augustine, and adjoining counties, of 
which he was elected Captain. Captain Broocks at once 
set out at the head of his company to join the army of 
General Ben EcCulloch, in Missouri. Before, or at the 
time of reaching the army, a battalion was formed of 
four detatched companies, commandedby Captain J. H. 
Broocks, Captain J. W. Whitfield of Lavaca county, 
Texas, Captain Murphy, of Arkansas, and Captain 
Brooks, of Arkansas. Captain Whitfield was elected 
Major of the battalion. Subsequently, Captain Brooks' 
company was transferred to Colonel Mcintosh's Arkan- 
sas regiment, and Captain E. R. Hawkins' Texas com- 
pany joined the battalion. Under this arganization, the 
battalion served in the campaigns against the hostile 
Indians in the winter of 1861, and at the battle of Elk 
Horn, in March, 1862. After the campaign in March, 
an accession of eight more companies was had, and the 
First Texas Legion was organized with J. W. Whitfield, 

Colonel; E. R. Hawkins, Lieutenant-Colonel; and 

Holman, Major. Major Holman resigned soon after his 
election, and Captain John H. Broocks was promoted 
Major. Subsequently, in 1863, Colonel Whitfield was 
promoted Brigadier- General, Lieutenant- Colonel E. R. 
Hawkins, Colonel, and Major Broocks, Lieutenant -Col- 
onel. Captain J. T. Whitfield was promoted Major. 


We reproduce, in this connection, Colonel Broocks' 
statement in regard to the action at Oakland, Missis- 
sippi, as tending to elucidate, in some measure, the ac- 
count of the same in the body of the narrative. 

General Price was retreating from Abbeville, followed 
by a large supply- train. A considerable force of the 
enemy was disembarked from transports on the Missis- 
sippi river, and by rapid marches, sought to strike the 
train in flank. Generals Hovey and Washburne, we 
believe, commanded this expedition, which amounted to 
about 4,000 infantry, 500 cavalry, and 12 guns. Nothing 
interposed between the unprotected train and this daring 
Federal column, but the Texas Brigade of about 1,500 
men. Lieutenant-Colonel John S. Griffith, of the Sixth 
Texas Cavalry, was in temporary command of the 
brigade. Colonel Griffith realized the gravity of the 
situation, and appreciated the value of prompt action. 
Says Colonel Broocks : 

"The Legion, Colonel Hawkins commanding, and 
three companies as an advance-guard, under my imme- 
diate command, fought Washburne's advance fifty-six 
minutes, near Oakland, Mississippi. We charged, and 
captured two guns, one of which, only, we brought off 
the field, as the team attached to the other were killed. 
Lieutenant- Colonel Griffith, commanding the brigade, 
was present, and in the charge, bearing himself most 
gallantly, and but for an accident, we perhaps would 
have captured Washburne. The Legion was driving the 
enemy in some confusion. The Sixth Texas had arrived, 
dismounted, and were ready to join in the fight. The 
Third Texas, Lieutenant-Colonel J. S. Boggess com- 
manding, had been dispatched to the enemy's rear, and 
directed to dismount and attack. At this interesting 
stage, Colonel Griffith received a report (false) that we 
were being outflanked. Placing credence in the report, 
he retired his men, and fireing ceased. Colonel Boggess 
who was just ready to attack in the rear at this time, 
hearing the firing no more in front, did not attack. 


Thus an excellently planned engagement was suffered 
to pass by default. But the Legions' spirited attack 
had discomfited the enemy, and, undoubtedly, saved 
from capture the wagon-train of General Price. Had 
Colonel Griffith's original plan been carried out, it is 
probable we would have captured the greater portion of 
the Federals present. Some idea may be had of the 
spirited nature of the engagement, from the fact that 
sixty-four cannon-shots were fired during the fifty-six 
minutes of action. After we were called off from the 
charge, the enemy recovered from the confusion caused 
by our unexpected charge, and their long lines of in- 
fantry, 'double-quicking' into position, revealed too 
much force for Colonel Griffith to again venture an 

The enemy accorded the Texans equal respect, and 
immediately retired from the field, and returned to the 
protection of their iron-clads on the, Mississippi river. 

Owing to the ill health of the gallant Hawkins, Colo- 
nel Broocks was very often left in command of the Le- 
gion, in which responsible station he acquitted himself 
always with credit, and won the love of his men and the 
confidence and respect of his superiors in rank. The 
Confederacy bore upon its rosters the name of no 
braver, or truer man to its cause, than that of Colonel 
John H. Broocks. Colonel Broocks has, since the term- 
ination of the war, lived a somewhat retired life on his 
farm, in the midst of his many friends, and surrounded 
by his interesting family. His name has been repeated- 
ly mentioned in connection with a seat in the State Sen- 
ate; and, though eminently fitted to grace the councils 
of State, he has persistently declined the honors which 
his fellow- citizens would gladly confer, contenting him- 
self with the laborious and unremunerating position of 
Chairman of the Democratic Congressional District 
Committee. Colonel Broocks is an educated gentleman 
— a man of firm will, fixed opinions, and the courage to 
advocate the same at all proper times. Though it 


seemed that the moral obliquity of "our army in Fland- 
ers" had seized the Confederate army, yet the author 
can testify to the Roman simplicity and stern exercise 
of morality by Colonel Broocks, at all times; and never 
did he hear a profane expression escape his lips. These 
pages, though in an inadequate manner, testify to the 
heroism of Colonel Broocks ; but of the many high 
qualities, both of head and heart, of which he is pos- 
sessed, none may know except those who are drawn 
into personal contact with him. If heroic services on 
the battle field, augmented by capacity, probity, and 
patriotism, entitle a man to civic preferment, then is 
Colonel John H. Broocks entitled to the highest office in 
the gift of the people of Texas. His friend, the author, 
cheerfully pays this simple tribute to his sterling worth, 
with the confident hope that he will yet respond to the 
solicitations of his fellow citizens, and give to the coun- 
cils of the State the benefit of his ripe experience, and 
practical knowledge of men, and political and economi- 
cal questions. 





Colonel Greer was born in Marshall county, Missis- 
sippi, in the year 1825; received a liberal education, 
which was just completed at the breaking out of the 
Mexican war. Though but twenty years of age, he was 
among the first to volunteer as a private in the First 
Mississippi Rifles, the colonel of which regiment was 
Jefferson Davis. Upon the organization of the com- 
mand, it reported for duty to General Taylor, beyond 
the Rio Grande. At the battles of Monterey and Buena 
Vista, in both of which it participated, so signal were its 
services, that a grateful country expressed admiration 
for the conduct of both officers and men. Colonel Greer 
returned home with the regiment on the expiration of 
their term of service; and, though but twenty-one years 
of age, was prevailed upon, by his admiring fellow-citi- 
zens, to become a candidate for Major- General of mili- 
tia, defeating General James D. Alcorn, a very popular 
man, for the position. Under General Greer's control, 
the militia was organized, drilled, and properly disci- 

In 1848, he removed to Texas, and soon after, was 
united in marriage to Miss Anna Holcombe, of Marshall, 
Texas, eldest daughter of Colonel B. L. and Mrs. Anna 
Holcombe, a beautiful young lady, possessed of rare 
charms of both mind and heart. General Greer located 
at Marshall, and devoted his attention to the civil pur- 


suits of planting and merchandizing. Being an ardent 
State's rights Democrat, he was deeply interested in the 
weighty events of 1859 and 1860, which seemed to be 
culminating into war. General Greer, at this time, prob- 
ably enjoyed a political influence not surpassed by that 
of any man in Texas. He was appointed, in 1859, 
"Grand Commander" of the secret organization known 
as the "K. G. C's," for the State of Texas, and employed 
himself in the organization of subordinate commanderies 
throughout the State. He manfully opposed the conser- 
vative policy of Governor Sam Houston, in 1860, and 
was urgent in his advocacy of a call for a sovereign 
convention. Upon the formation of the provisional gov- 
ernment, at Montgomery, Alabama, Colonel Greer re- 
ceived the first colonel's commission issued to a Texan, 
and proceeded immediately to organize the Third Regi- 
ment, of Texas Cavalry. Of his services in connection 
with that regiment, the foregoing narrative speaks. At 
the expiration of the first year's service, Colonel Greer 
declined re-election to the colonelcy of the regiment, 
though he would have had no opposition (so high was 
he held in the esteem of the men), and returned to 

Of his services in the Trans- Mississippi Department, 
the author can not speak. Colonel Greer was brave, 
cool in danger, quick to grasp the situation of affairs in 
the most critical juncture, and as prompt to act. To 
these high qualities as an officer, he combined those of 
the gentlemen — kindness and conscientiousness. Since 
the conclusion of the war, Colonel Greer ha3 lived quietly 
and somewhat retired, upon his estate near Marshall, 
Texas, respected and loved by his neighbors. 




Colonel H. P. Mabry was born in the village of Laurel 
Hill, Carroll county, Georgia, October 27, 1829. His 
father, whose Christian name he bears, originally came 
from North Carolina, settling in Georgia in 1805. He 
was a soldier in the war of 1812, and in the campaigns 
against the Creek Indians. The father died while yet 
the son was but a youth. Young Mabry was deeply 
impressed with the necessity for an education ; and as 
his patrimony was inconsiderable, he encountered many 
privations and hardships in the prosecution of his cher- 
ished object. After attending: this "country schooP , for 
a few months, young Mabry was prepared to enter 
college — prepared intellectually, but by no means finan- 
cially. To obviate this difficulty, he entered a store as 
salesman at a salary of five dollars per month, and in 
addition to this, he soon found night employment in the 
postoffice. By the most rigid economy, he was en- 
abled, after two years incessant labor, to enter the Uni- 
versity of Tennessee, located at Knoxville. Here, by 
his studious habits and gentlemanly deportment, he 
won the confidence of the college faculty, and the re- 
spect of his fellow students. But his means were not 
sufficient to bear him through the entire course, and he 
was compelled to lay aside his cherished books, and go 
forth into the world to earn sufficient means to defray 
his collegiate expenses. Thus did the indomitable boy 


earn an education by his own industry and persever- 
ance. This indomitable will, and fixedness of purpose, 
thus early displayed, continued, in after years, to be 
the most marked characteristic of the man. Not many 
years after the completion of his education, he removed 
to Jefferson, Texas, and engaged in mercantile pursuits. 
In 1854, he was united in marriage to Miss Abbie Hay- 
wood — a most estimable lady, worthy to be the wife of a 
hero — the daughter of W. H. Haywood, Esq., a planter 
living near Jefferson. 

Soon after his marriage, Colonel Mabry commenced 
the study of law, was admitted to the bar, and at once 
entered upon a lucrative practice. He was elected to a 
seat in the Legislature, in 1856, and again in 1859, and 
was re-elected to the same position, and held a seat in 
the House of Representatives, in 1861. Upon the se- 
cession of Texas, Colonel Mabry returned home, and 
organized a military company, at the head of which he 
marched against Fort Wichita. The Federal forces 
abandoned the fort at his approach, and retired. Cap- 
tain Mabry occupied the place until May 28, when he 
was relieved, and, with his company, reported to Colonel 
Greer for duty, and his company was assigned the po- 
sition of Company G, in the Third Texas Cavalry, the 
first regiment that left the State of Texas. As Captain 
of Company G, and as Colonel of the regiment, the 
foregoing narrative deals. He was absolutely fearless, 
and cool to indifference in the midst of danger, and his 
indomitable will seemed able to grapple with fate itself 
in the formulation of destiny. He ought to have been a 
Lieutenant-General, and placed in command of Vicks- 
burg. The "Modern Sphynx" would have found in H. 
P. Mabry a foeman worthy of his steel. General Robert 
Toombs, of Georgia, has been credited with the saying, 
that West Point defeated the Confederacy. Certainly, 
proven merit did not receive reward by promotion at the 
hands of Mr. Davis, as justice and the efficiency of the 
service required. As better illustrating the respect and 


esteem in which Colonel Mabry was held by those best 
qualified to judge his merits, the following communica- 
tions to the Secretary of War are introduced : 

' 'Head -quarters, Snyder's Mills, 
Yazoo River, March 30, 1864, 
"Hon. James A. Seddon: 

"Sir — I have the honor to recommend for promotion 
to the rank of Brigadier-General, P. A. C S., Colonel 
H. P. Mabry, Third Regiment, Texas Cavalry, having 
been near him in the field since July, 1861; having had 
him under my command, in my brigade, for many 
months; having seen him tested in camp, on the march, 
and on various hard -fought fields, I can, unhesitatingly, 
and do, cheerfully, recommend him for a higher rank, 
as a meed to merit and distinguished service. He was 
severely wounded in Missouri, in 1861, and still more 
severely at the battle of Iuka, on the 19th of September 
last, when he and his gallant regiment most heroically 
bore what I considered the brunt of the fight. As a man 
of correct principles, of soldier-like deportment, of good 
finished education, of unquestioned coolness, bravery, 
and sagacity, of systematic and determined character, 
and as a disciplinarian, I can fully recommend him as 
highly fitted to take command of a brigade, and I feel 
sure that his success would be satisfactory to the War 
Department, the President, and the country. 
"I remain, sir, very respectfully your obedient servant, 

Brigadier- General, P. A. C. S." 
' "Head -quarters Texas Cavalry Brigade, 

"March 27, 1864. 
"Hon. James A. Seddon : 

"Sir — Having learned that the interest of the service 
demands the appointment of another Brigadier- General 
in Major- General Lee's Cavalry corps, the undersigned 
officers, of the Texas Brigade cheerfully recommend to 
your favorable consideration, the peculiar claims of 
Colonel Mabry, Third Texas Cavalry. He has been 


faithfully engaged, in the service of his country, since 
July, 1861 ; twice severely wounded, and by gallantry 
and rigid discipline, has won the universal approbation 
of his superior officers. For force of character, resolu- 
tion, prudence, indomitable courage, energy, and abil- 
ity, he has no superior in the cavalry of the Depart- 

"L. S. ROSS, Brigadier-General. 

* 'Colonel First Texas Legion. 

"D. W. JONES, 
"Colonel Ninth Texas Cavalry. 

"P. F. ROSS, 
"Lieut. -Colonel Sixth Texas Cavalry. 

"Lieut. -Colonel Third Texas Cavalry.'' 

"Head -quarters Armstrong's Division, 

"Near Canton, Miss., March 29, 1864. 

"General S. Cooper, 

"Adjutant and Inspector-General, Richmond, Va. : 

"General — I have the honor to recommend Colonel H. 
P. Mabry, Third Texas Cavalry, for promotion, to be 
placed in command of a brigade now in my division. 
Although Colonel Mabry has never served under my im- 
mediate command, I can recommend him, as he com- 
manded a regiment (Third Texas Cavalry, dismounted), 
in General Hebert's Infantry Brigade, in which I com- 
manded the Third Louisiana Regiment. I consider him 
an excellent disciplinarian (especially needed in the 
cavalry), and one of the most competent, in every re- 
spect, that can be selected. His regiment, which is the 
best qualification, is one of the best disciplined, and 
most efficient, in the service. 

"I have the honor to be, with respect, your obedient 


Brigadier- General." 


" Head -quarters Lee's Cavalry Department, 

"Canton, Miss., March 29 1864. 
"General S. Cooper, 

"Adjutant and Inspector- General, Richmond, Va. : 
"General — I have the honor to recommend that Colo- 
nel H. P. Mabry, Third Texas Cavalry, be appointed 
Brigadier- General, and assigned to the command of the 
brigade recently commanded by Brigadier- General 
Adams. Colonel Mabry entered the service when the 
war first broke out, and has continued therein ever 
since, except when temporarily absent on account of two 
wounds received in battle. I consider him the best disci- 
plinarian in my command. He has distinguished him- 
self in most of the engagements of the West, and has 
often been complimented for his gallantry and good con- 
duct. I desire Colonel Mabr}' as a permanent com- 
mander of the brigade to which he is now temporarily 

"I am, General, yours respectfully, 

"S. D. LEE, Major- General." 
"Meridian, Miss., June 23, 1864. 
"General S. Cooper, 

"Adjutant and Inspector- General, Richmond, Va. : 
"General — I have the honor to enclose a return of the 
brigade commanded by Colonel H. P. Mabry. It is the 
brigade recently commanded by Brigadier-General Wirt 
Adams, who now commands a division consisting of the 
brigades of Generals Gholson and John Scott, in East 
Louisiana. Mabry's Brigade was in his command, but 
is now in North Mississippi. General Adams has im- 
mediate charge of the country from Grenada to New 
Orleans. I consider Colonel Mabry one of the best of- 
ficers I have met in the army, and much desire his pro- 
motion. Should it not be deemed proper to appoint him 
in this Department, and to his present brigrade, I trust 
he may be promoted and assigned elsewhere, 

"Yours, respectfully. • 

"S. D.LEE, Major-General." 

[Beginning with Chapter XXXIX, taken from Rose's 




Charles S. Stuart was born unto Charles and Susan 
Arthur Stuart on July 2nd, 1808, in Knox county, Ken- 
tucky, and with his parents in early life moved to Hen- 
ry county, Tennessee, where he gained his education 
from the common schools. His father died in Perry 
county Tennessee, and afterwards his mother, Susan 
Arther Stuart, was again married to Colonel Miller, and 
the family removed to Yallabusha county, Mississippi, 
and settled near Coffeeville in the year 1833, where 
Charles S. Stuart was married to Martha Cox in 1836, 
and unto them were born eight children, five girls and 
three boys, and as told in this narrative he was killed in 
battle and buried at Round Mound. 

Of his family, his widow, Martha Cox Stuart now lives 
with her daughter, Mrs. C. A. Smith, at Mt. Pleasant, 
Texas. Two others of the family still live — Mrs. S. J. 
Stephens, also at Mt. Pleasant, and Mrs. Nellie Stuart, 
of Ft. Worth, Texas. 

Captain Stuart moved with his family to Texas in 
December 1841, and settled a farm in Red River district 
eight miles west from Mt. Pleasant, Texas, where he 
lived and raised his family, and from his enterprise and 
public spirit he became well known as one of those 
staunch pioneers of North Texas. 

He loved Texas and was ever watchful in her devel- 
opment into homes for an enlightened and prosperous 


people, and his name can still be found at the head of 
the list in many grand efforts by the early settlers. The 
schoolhouse for the early training of the children and 
the church house for the worship of the God of the 
pioneer settler were his pride. His house was known to 
the pioneer of Texas as a place of hospitable entertain- 
ment, and among his neighbors he was respected and 
loved. He was a consistent member of the Methodist 
church, in which he officiated as steward, he was a 
royal arch mason and stood high in that institution of 
selected friends, and by his industry had accumulated a 
fine property and owned a number of slaves, vhich he 
regarded as a special care entrusted to his hands and 
was never cruel. And he was one of the foremost men in 
building a good and comfortable home and surrounding 
it with beauties in plants and domestic animals and be- 
came noted for the extra fine developments in the breed- 
ing of his stock. 

He raised a company of soldiers, not rebels but of 
law-abiding Texans, who loved Texas and raise their 
arms in her defense. He was elected Captain and led 
them in accord with his convictions which he at all 
times was in readiness to defend. 

He died as he lived, at his post, and was buried in the 
wilds of nature, and sweet memories of his goodness 
and his ever upright walk is all the monument that 
marks the sacred precincts where his body rests. Thus 
passed an early settler of Texas and one of nature's 

And God forbid that the happy throngs of bright and 
educated Texas boys and girls that have feasted from 
the fields that he planted and drank from the fountains 
that he opened unto them, while in the giddy world 
should ever be so forgetful as to connect his name with 




Captain Evans was the youngest son of a family of 
eleven children born unto John Evans and Nancy 
Plumber Evans and was born in Breathitt county, 
Tennessee, on Aug. 1837, and attended the common 
schools of that country until his father moved to Texas 
in 1851, and settled in Titus county, three miles north 
from Mt. Pleasant, where shortly afterwards his father 
died, and at an early age he took charge of his moth- 
er's business and successfully conducted a stock ranch 
for her during her long widowhood. A part of the time 
he ranched cattle in Palo Pinto county on the Kuchi 
creeks, but afterwards he conducted a grocery business# 
at Mt. Pleasant from which place he enlisted a Texas 
soldier, in Stuart's company, and was afterwards elect- 
ed captain as told in the narrative. 

Capt. Evans was a true type of the pioneer stockman, 
he was medium in size and of dark complexion, dark 
hair and eyes, had a slow soft voice, and a modest or 
retired appearance, never spoke loud or became excited 
and his nature was kind when he was not mad, but 
when he became mad his reason became lost or de- 
throned and he was fierce as a tiger and would act as in 
desperation. He was usually cool and said but little, 
and was always brave and ready for service, he alone 
kept his counsels and had few confidants, as a Captain 
he performed his duty without a word and to me his 


face always wore that cold expression that neither was 
susceptible to love or hatred, but was always just "Cap" 
after the fall of Vicksburg. He was detailed a scout 
and was given men of his own selection, he made his 
selection from the 9th Texas to suit "Cap" and failed to 
carry his quoto of men from his own company and many 
of us considered that he either doubted our valor or 
capacity, and consequently had went back on us, and 
as a leader we never afterwards became fully reconciled 
to his course, but he cared not a straw, he was only 

He returned to his home after the war and became to 
society a recluse. Dame rumor said that he had been 
crossed in love, but enquiry failed to substantiate, but 
he went back to his old home and trained hounds for 
the chase, built traps and caught fish, raised hogs and 
spent his time in hunting. 

He was expert with a gun and his greatest joy seemed 
in the training of his neighbor's boys how to shoot a 
deers or trap a big fish and his home became a great 
resort to the sport loving youth. His "gun" "and his 
dogs were the best" and his aim and judgment were 
never questioned. He was liberal in his gifts to all in- 
stitutions, the church, the Sunday School and all other 
institutions, he supported liberally with his means, but 
never with his presence. 

His home was the home of the sport in the cha3e, on 
the hunt, in the fishing party he was the life and leader. 
Thus he lived and died in April 1890 and was buried on 
his ranch, where his remains repose amid the things he 
loved in life. He died as he lived, only "Cap." 

He was never a member of the church or any other 
social institution — he was only Captain Perry Evans. 




James N. English was the son of Col. Campbell Eng- 
lish and Mrs. Martha Crisp English, and a second son 
of a family of seven children — four boys and three girls. 
He was born in Greene county, Missouri, and moved to 
Texas with his parents in 1836, and settled in Red river 
district near the town of Mt. Vernon, in now Franklin 
county, Texas. His early education was from his par- 
ents and common schools of the country, and graduated 
at Independence, Texas, in 1859. He enlisted in the 
Titus Greys, Company I, Ninth Texas Cavalry, from the 
home of his father. 

From his boyhood he was very entertaining and fond 
of jokes and had a pleasing address. He was kind and 
lovable as a boy, and by nature a leader among his 
companions. He stood six feet and was of light com- 
plexion, with keen and expressive blue eyes and was by 
nature fearless; had a loud voice and used it freely. 
He was elected second Lieutenant in our organization 
and from his commanding bravery at Round Mound 
where he succeeded in handling the company to great 
advantage. After our Captain Stuart had fallen he ap- 
peared as if by general consent to be entitled to fill his 
place as captain, to which place he was duly elected 
over Dud W. Jones, afterwards our gallant Colonel. 

He commanded his company with distinction at Birds' 
Creek and Elk Horn, and was always in the hardest and 


hottest of the battle, and was never known to fail to be 
present in the longest and most tiresome scout. 

His health became impaired from exposure and hard- 
ships and he was forced to resign his position to the 
great regret of his company, On returning to Texas he 
again organized and commanded a company on the 
Texas border, and after the war he entered the practice 
of law at Cleburne, Texas, from which place he has 
served in the State Legislature, and has filled other of- 
fices of prominence and trust, and at this writing he is 
known as a good lawyer, and a prominent citizen loved 
and respected by all who know him. 




Lieutenant Lade Miller, the First Lieutenant of the 
Titus Greys, was a tall raw-boned man of dark com- 
plexion, black hair and eyes. He was about forty-five 
years old and one of the first settlers of this part of 
Texas. I do not know the date or place of his birth, 
but recollect that he was one of the leading men in 
the days of early settlers. 

He was not a military man, he seldom spoke, and 
when he did it was in short and pointed sentences. He 
was very firm and had his convictions, and they were 
never changed. He was too good to his men, they 
never asked a favor but it was granted, whether it was 
consistent with military rule or not, for he was a law 
unto himself, and unto that law alone he gave prece- 
dence. He resigned and went home, I suppose, because 
it suited him. 




Buster Haynes was a native of Henry county, Tenn., 
and his education was from the common schools of that 
state. He was a brother of Henry Haynes, who sur- 
vived the war. 

Buster was a large portly man with a face as fair and 
smooth as a baby's, light hair and blue eyes and a jolly 
companionable, good fellow. He was a great favorite 
and a principle of justice was a ruling feature in his 
makeup. I suppose he must have been a law student 
and was the company's arbitrator and any differences 
could be decided by what Buster said. 

He was beloved by all. He fell at Corinth and was 
lamented throughout the existence of the war. 




Lieutenant Coplin was of Irish descent and red com- 
plected and with his tinge of Irish brogue joined in all 
the merry sports so common among the soldiers, had 
blue eyes, light hair and a rudy fair complexion. 

He was a brave man, but never appeared to realize 
that he was an officer only filling his place with few 
words spoken. He was always lively and had jokes for 
all. I have failed to gather any data of his family. He 
was killed in Mississippi in 1893. 




Lieutenant Chambers went with the Titus Greys from 
Dangerfield, Texas, and could learn nothing of his 
early life or training, but think his parents were among 
the first settlers of that town and am impressed that his 
father was a merchant of that town and think that 
Lieutenant Chambers was brought up in that business. 
He was well educated and by nature inclined to be more 
dignified than the ordinary soldier. He was rather 
small in statue, dark complected, was very brave and 
daring, and as a private soldier he distinguished him- 
self for his bravery on almost every battle field and his 
cool bravery gave to him high standing in his command. 

After he became an officer he appeared to take less 
interest than when a private and on going into a fight 
always carried a gun. He was sullen in nature and 
never a favorite with his superiors. He became careless 
and neglected his company and was not with us at the 
surrender, but learned that he married and settled in 




Lieutenant Henry Haynes was a native of Tennessee, 
and in his youth moved with his parents to Mississippi, 
and his home was near the famed battlefield, Corinth, 
and was the senior of the two Lieutenant Haynes, was 

married in the State of Mississippi to Miss Petty, 

and moved with his young wife to Texas and settled 
near Mt. Vernon where he opened a farm with his 
slaves and from there enlisted as a private soldier. 

He was large and portly, of fine physique, and of 
sanguine temperament and a born commander. He 
commanded the company after Captain Evans was sent 
a scout and from a military standpoint was our best 
Captain. He was never promoted but commanded the 
company in our hardest campaigns. 

He would share his bed, food or any of his possessions 
with any of his men and had sympathy for all suffering, 
but would not tolerate grumbling. His life as an officer 
was all business, he was greatly beloved by his men and 
by his superior officers, considered one of the best offi- 
cers in Ross' Brigade. 




Lieutenant Moore was a small man of rather dark 
complexion, and I never knew anything of his family, 
but have heard him tell that in his early life he worked 
at brick and pottery. 

He was kind and friendly and would never be taken 
from his dress to be an officer, but he rendered to the 
company good and efficient service during the whole of 
his career. As an officer he was brave and careful, but 
always ready to fight. Have never met him since the 




Orlando N. Hollingsworth was born in Calhoun county, 
Alabama, April 5, 1836, and removed, with his mother, 
to Rusk county, Texas, in December, 1845, his father 
having died the earlier part of the last- mentioned year. 
He laid the foundation of his education in the common 
schools of the country, and graduated from the Univer- 
sity of Virginia, in 1859. He responded, among the 
earliest, to the call of the South, in 1861, for volunteers, 
and enlisted as a private soldier in the company of Capt. 
R. H. Cumby, which comprised many of the best young 
men of Rusk county. His soldierly qualities, and exe- 
cutive capacity, soon secured him promotion to the re- 
sponsible station of Adjutant of his regiment, the Third 
Texas Cavalry, in which position he served with credit 
to himself and profit to the service, until he was seriously 
wounded in the assault on Corinth, in 1862, and perma- 
nently unfitted for service in the held. He returned to 
Texas, and became interested in the cause of education 
— a cause in whose behalf he has expended much pecuni- 
ary means and the best years of his life. Coronal In- 
stitute, located at San Marcos, Texas, was founded by 
Captain Hollingsworth, in 1864-6, and was long presided 
over by himself. Subsequently, he was elected Super- 
intendent of Public Instruction, and, on the abolition of 
that office by constitutional amendment, he was ap- 
pointed Secretary to the State Board of Education, a 
position which he now most efficiently fills. In addition 


to his clerical labors in connection with office, Captain 
Hollingsworth founded, and conducts, the Educational 
Journal, a timely and invaluable adjunct to the cause 
that he has espoused. Mr. Hollingsworth is compara- 
tively a young man; has had some expierence in prac- 
tice at the bar, and served one term in the State legis- 
lature. Of a benevolent disposition, kind in all his im- 
pulses, and highly intellectual, he has always exercised 
a wholesome, moral influence wherever his services have 
been required. If merit meets with a just reward, Mr. 
Hollingsworth may be regarded as a man with a future, 
and to whatever position he may be called in the service 
of the State, the people may rest assured of having at 
least one pure, and honest, and industrious public ser- 


Chapter XL. 


Kilpatrick succeeded in getting away from Lovejoy 
Station with about thirty or forty of the Texas Brigade, 
among whom are now remembered: Captain Noble; 
Lieutenants Teague, Moon and West; Privates Crabtree, 
Pirtle, Nidever, Mapes, "Major" "White, Reuben White, 
Flueilen, and Ware. The march of the prisoners to the 
lines of General Sherman was fatiguing in the extreme. 
The Confederates had been in the saddle for three con- 
secutive days, during which time they had partaken of 
not one regular meal; and the Union troopers were al- 
most as destitute of rations, though what little they had 
was generously divided with their famished prisoners. 
The prisoners were well treated by their captors. It was 
only the "home guard" who delighted in misusing these 
unfortunates of war, just as the professional politician 
on either side refuses even now to be placated. The 
men who confronted each other in battle were too brave 
to feel pleasure in inflicting pain on a prisoner. The 
braves of Hancock, Custer, McClellan, and Rosecranz 
are not the men who have kept the "bloody shirt" wav- 
ing; nor are the men of Joe Johnston, Beauregard, 
Maxy, and Ross, found among the impracticables, who, 
like his excellency, the late President Jeff. Davis, ima- 
gine the Confederacy still exists. General Sherman's 
convention with General Johnston expressed the senti- 
ments of the soldiers on either side. Arriving at Sher- 
man's quarters the prisoners were placed in the "bull- 
pen," and given a "square" meal of "hard-tack" and 


"sow-belly, " as crackers and bacon were called by the 
Federals. In the "bull-pen" were a number of whin- 
ing, canting, oath- seeking hypocrites and sycophants, 
who, with the characteristic zeal of new converts, em- 
ployed their time in maligning every thing connected 
with their suffering section, and in extolling the supe- 
rior civilization of the North. The fiery and impetuous 
Crabtree could not brook this despicable servility, and 
he undertook to do battle, singly and alone, in vindica- 
tion of the South. A lively "scrimmage" was on the 
tapis, Crabtree knocking his opponents right and left, 
when the guard interposed on behalf of the new con- 
verts, whom every brave Unionist secretly despised. 
After a day or two spent here, the prisoners were placed 
on the cars and conveyed to Nashville. Here the for- 
lorn fellows were placed in the yard of the penitentiary, 
and kept for several days, as General Wheeler was in 
the vicinity with a large force of cavalry, and a rescue 
was feared. Finally, by rail again, the prisoners were 
taken to Louisville, Kentucky. Upon entering the 
guard-house, each prisoner was required to deposit, in a 
large tub near the door, his pocket-knife, money, and 
whatever else of value he possessed. No account what- 
ever was taken of the articles so confiscated, nor did the 
prisoners ever hear of their property again, or compen- 
sation for the same. The journey from Kentucky's me- 
tropolis, through Cincinnati and Columbus, to Camp 
Chase, distant four miles from the capital of Ohio, was 
without incident, save the escape of Lieutenant A. J. 
West, of the Sixth Texas. Some time before reaching 
Louisville, and while the cars were flying at the rate of 
forty miles an hour, the night being intensely dark, this 
daring officer jumped from the train, and, strange to 
say, suffered no accident or injury from the rash leap. 
He made his way through the enemy's lines in safety to 
his own command. 

Camp Chase was situated near the Sciota river, so 
said, for, during the author's sojourn of near nine 


months in those delectable quarters, he had no oppor- 
tunity for observation beyond the prison walls. The 
"Camp" consisted of three "prisons," designated re- 
spectively, "No. 1," "No. 2," and "No. 3." In "No. 1" 
officers exclusively were confined. "No's 2 and 3" ac- 
commodated the 20 or thirty thousand privates on hand 
— a number sufficient to have averted the catastrophe at 
Petersburg. The "prisons" were enclosed by a plank- 
wall upwards of fifteen feet high. On the top of this 
wall a guard, consisting of about twenty "posts," was 
stationed, with doubtless another line on the out side 
below, as certainly a heavy "relief" was always imme- 
diately on hand. A slight ditch, or furrow, on the inside 
of the wall, and parallel with it, was the "dead-line," 
over which no "Reb" might venture, unless desirous of 
making himself the target of the vigilant guard. The 
quarters of the prisoners consisted of comfortable frame 
buildings in two rows, and fronting upon a common 
steeet. The houses were capable of containing near two 
hundred prisoners. Bunks in tiers of three formed the 
sleeping accommodations. Colonel W. P. Richardson 
commanded the post, and Lieutenant Sankey w r as Pro- 
vost Marshal. The rations consisted of three crackers 
and about four ounces of white fish per day. Sometimes 
the bill of fare was varied by the issuance of beef and 
flour, but not in quantities exceeding the above esti- 
mate. In consequence of such short rations, the priso- 
ners were constantly experiencing the pangs of hunger, 
and that some died absolutely of sheer starvation, the 
writer is indubitably certain. Three men occupied a 
bunk, and sometimes during the night one would die, 
when not unfrequently the remaining two would actual- 
ly contend over the corpse for his rations and blankets. 
Men here — many — lost all self-respect, and the worst 
passions of our nature predominated over the good. 
Though the prisoners were not allowed money, yet they 
were given "sutler's checks" in lieu, ranging in de- 
nominations from five to fifty cents. The sutler's shop 


abutted against the wall, and through a crevice, about 
three inches wide and six in length, a prisoner, blessed 
with the possession of these coveted checks, could pur- 
chase stationery, needles and thread, guttapercha but- 
tons, tobacco, and a few other immaterial articles. Any- 
thing, however, in the nature of provisions or clothing 
was under the severest ban. Nothing eatable entered 
the prison walls save the meager rations doled out to the 
half- famished men. Many of the prisoners, addicted to 
the use of tobacco, would occasionly sell one meal per 
day for five cents, with which to purchase a half-dozen 
chews of the weed. In this way a considerable trade 
sprang up, and several prisoners conducted quite a 
grocery business. One, a Georgian, Waddell of name, 
earned quite a considerable little sum of money. The old 
skin-flint converted his bunk into a store, and here hig- 
gled with the starving wretches who brought their ra- 
tions to exchange with him for a small piece of tobacco, 
or extolled the flavor of the same rations to some would- 
be purchaser who had the "sutler's checks" to pay for 
the luxury. 

Robberies were not unfrequent, and an incorrigible 
Englishman — who was the subject of quite a voluminous 
correspondence between Lord Lyons and Mr. Seward — 
was frequently punished. This wretch was sometimes 
fastened to a cross, and his face laid directly under the 
spout of the pump, though the weather was bitter cold, 
and the water pumped into his face until respiration 
would be suspended. At other times, he was placed in 
a barrel having holes through which the arms protruded, 
and in this novel jacket he would be compelled to "mark 
time" in the snow for hours. 

The author remembers meeting in prison No. 2, a 
young Illinoisan, who represented himself as tee county 
judge at Paris, Illinois, imprisoned simply because he 
was accused of being a "copperhead." 

To add to the calamities of the wretched men, the 
smallpox broke out among them, and from twenty to 


thirty of the poor fellows were carried out in rude cof- 
fins each morning to the "silent camping ground. " Of 
the small company of Texans, Reuben White and Al. 
Nidever died. 

An old Frenchman is remembered — they called him 
"Old Bragg," who had been blown up at Vicksburg 
with the gallant Third Louisiana Regiment, and cap- 
tured. "Old Bragg' ' had one leg missing, one arm and 
one eye gone, and the poor old fellow's mind was sadly 
impaired. His whole thought was bent upon an ex- 
change of prisoners, and each morning he would arise 
at daylight from his hard bunk and announce: "Boys, 
ze exchange he come today; zay tell me so last night!" 
and forthwith he would begin to pack up his scanty ef- 
fects and hobble to the prison gate, where he would re- 
main the greater portion of the day in expectation of 
being called to commence the glad journey to his sun- 
kissed Louisiana. This was his programme, without 
material variation, for several months. The poor old 
fellow finally died before the "exchange came," and 
sleeps in that silent camp, with thousands of his com- 
rades, in the midst of a people who have no flowers to 
strew upon the rebel's grave. 

It may be noted that quite an industry sprung up in 
the manufacture of gutta-percha rings and other trink- 
ets, which went to swell the traffic of old Waddell. 

About the only diversion afforded within the walls 
was in walking around the camp, and, thus engaged, 
eould be seen thousands of aimless men, unless the de- 
sire to "kill time" be an aim, walking around and 
around the camp like tigers, bears, and lions in their 

The author can not refrain from acknowledging the 
kindness of a fellow-prisoner, Mr. John D. Miller, of 
Victoria, Texas, who, though in a separate prison, man- 
aged to convey some of the desired checks to him. 
And, though lucre is not welcomed at any time, this cer- 


tainly was the most heartily unwelcomed and thorough- 
ly appreciated of any ever received, before or since. 

Thus the winter passed. The spring came. Lin- 
coln's brutal assassination startled the prisoners, and 
the surrender of Lee destroyed the last vestige of lin- 
gering hope. Applicants for the oath now became so 
numerous, and, as they were treated with such con- 
tempt by the "reb to the last," that it was deemed best 
to separate them, giving the rebs prison No. 3, and the 
"razor-backs," as the applicants for the oath were 
called, prison No 2. About this time Colonel Hawkins, 
of Tennessee, gained access to prison No. 3, and made 
the boys a brief, but eloquent, "talk," concluding: 
"Remain true to the cause of Dixie; and, if our worst 
fears are realized, we can be able to say with King 
Francis at Pavia, 'All is lost but honor.' " This manly 
utterance was applauded by the ragged, half starved 
patriots to the echo. 

Finally the "exchange came," though poor "Old 
Bragg" slept too soundly to hear the summons, and the 
prisoners were conveyed south in batches of 500. The 
squad in which the author left proceeded by rail to 
Cairo, and thence down the Mississippi river to New 
Orleans. At Cairo, the kind-hearted citizens vied With 
each other in their contributions to the necessities of 
the miserable Southerners. 

Without disembarking at New Orleans at all, the 
prisoners were steamed back to Vicksburg, and here 
disembarked under the auspices of a negro guard. 
This was the most humiliating experience of the whole 
period of captivity. The noble ladies of Vicksburg in- 
terested themselves in ministering to the necessities of 
the Confederates. The Texans were especially indebted 
to Miss Nora Roach — whom to call an angel, is but to 
compliment the saintly host that ministers around the 
"great white throne." At Vicksburg, Ross' miserables 
were paroled, and soon en route for their Texan homes. 

The Unionists, while heaping merited censure on the 


Confederate authorities for the mal -treatment of Fed- 
eral prisoners at Andersonville, and other- Southern 
prisons, deny the charge of mistreatment of Confederate 
prisoners themselves. In support of what is here stated 
as being the rule at Camp Chase, from September, 1864, 
until May, 1865, the author refers to any truthful Con- 
federate there confined within the period specified. 
They could not have been treated worse and live, for 
many absolutely died of starvation. An exchange of 
prisoners was demanded in the interest of humanity. 
The Washington administration refused to sign a cartel, 
because it would give the South what she most needed 
— men. The Confederacy was unable to properly feed 
her own soldiers in the field. The Washington admin- 
istration were well advised of this fact, yet it allowed 
Union prisoners to die of ill-treatment, when one word 
pronounced by Lincoln and his advisers, would have 
freed them. Posterity will judge correctly who is re- 
sponsible for the graves at Camp Chase, Camp Douglas, 
Rock Island, Andersonville, Richmond, and other pens 
North and South. 

Note: — During the trying days in Camp Chase, there 
were some who never relaxed in their fealty to the 
South, and who never forgot that they were gentlemen. 
Among these it is a pleasure to name James Arnold, 
Sixth Texas Cavalry, now of Wartrace, Tennessee; 
James Crabtree, J. D. White, Perry Pirtle, William 
Fluellen, of the Third Texas Cavalry, and John D. Mil- 
ler, of Victoria, Texas. 

I Chapter XL, taken from Rose's History. .] 


Chapter XLI. 





This estimate copied below is made by a Northern 
man from a Federal standpoint. We copy without 
comment, as the figures are not on our side of the war 
between the States: 

"The first battle of Bull Run cost the North 3,000 
soldiers and the South 2,000. At Shiloh 13,000 Feder- 
als and 11,000 Confederates fell. On the "seven days' 
retreat" the two armies left behind them 33,000 men. 
Antietam weakened the Northern by 12,000 and the 
Southern by 26,000. At Gettysburg 23,000 Federals 
and 32,000 Confederates were mowed down. In the 
siege of Vicksburg the Southerners lost 31,000 men. 
The three days in the Wilderness cost the North 38,008. 
Sherman, in his glorious march to the sea, left 37,000 
soldiers between Chattanooga and Atlanta. Corinth 
has a record of both armies of 16.000; Frederickburg, 
17,000; Chancellorsville, 28,000; Chickamauga, 33,000; 
Spottsylvania, 35,000, and Stone's Run, 37,000 men. 
And so the horrors might be multiplied. 

"Official records show that in the armies of the North 
44,000 were killed in action during the war, 49,000 died 
of wounds, 186,000 died of disease and 25,000 died from 
causes unknown, making a total of 304,000 deaths of 
Northern soldiers. But these numbers do not include 



those who died at their homes from wounds and dis- 
ease. It is not too high an estimate to place the deaths 
in the North from the war at 350,000. And for every 
Northerner that fell it is not too high an estimate to 
place the 700,000 lives destroyed in one short war. 
That struggle multiplied threefold the death rate of or- 
dinary times, and took, not the children, the aged, the 
sick and the weak, but the very flower of the nation's 


The total number of Regiments, Battalions and Le- 
gions comprising the Confederate army during the war 
1861-1865 were 834. 

Number of Regiments 637; of these 536 were Infan- 
try, 124 Cavalry and 13 of Artillery. 

Number of Battalions 145; of these 67 were Infantry, 
28 Cavalry and 50 Artillery. 

Number of Legions 16; of these 13 were Infantry and 
3 of Cavalry. There are no exact records, but best es- 
timates place the number at 600,000 men. 

Alabama Regiments Inf 

Arkansas Regiments 

Florida Regiments 

Georgia Regiments 

Kentucky Regiments 

Louisiana Regiments 

Maryland Regiments 

Mississippi Regiments. . . . 

Missouri Regiments 

N. Carolina Regiments. . . 
S. Carolina Regiments. . . 
Tennessee Regiments.... 

Texas Regiments 

Virginia Regiments 

Confederate Regiments.. 

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44 3 










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Generals 2 

Lieutenant Generals 21 

Major " 99 

Brigadier " 480 

Colonels 1319 

Surgeons — Army 834, Navy 22 856 

Assistant Surgeons — Army 1668, Navy 10 1678 

Passed Surgeons 41 

Hospitals 425 

Total Medical Corps. 3000 

The non-seceding states in 1860 had a population of 
men between the ages of 18 and 45 years of 4,559,862. 
The seceding states had a like population of 1,064,193 — 
over 4 to 1. 

The border states gave to the south an army of 19,000 
men, and the slave-holding states returned the compli- 
ment by furnishing to the United States an army of 
89,009 men — over 5 to 1, 

The aggregate enrollment in the United States army 
for the four years war was 2,865,028 men. To oppose 
this force the aggregate enrollment of the seceding 
states was 600,000 men. Thus New York and Pennsyl- 
vania furnished 736,786 fighting" men, while Illinois, 
Ohio and Indiana responded to the Union, call with 
768,635 fighting men, and New England states with the 
border and slave states responded with 679,586 men ; 
and in addition to this the states west of the Mississippi 
river (not counting Missouri) joined Delaware, New 
Jersey and the District of Columbia with 99,337 negroes 
served to swell the numbers to 614,532 men. Thus pro- 
viding four armies, either of them equal in numbers 
and larger than the whole of the Confederate forces. 

Of the numbers above stated the United States lost in 
killed and died from wounds received in battles 110,070 
men— about 4.7 per cent. 

While the Confederate losses from like causes was 


74,000 men or about 9 per cent., the largest number of 
men in modern warfare that ever fell around their 
standard. Compared with other modern wars the 
Germans in the Franco-German war 3.1 per cent. ; the 
Austrian war in 1886 2.6 per cent., and the Allies of the 
Crimean was 3.2 per cent., and in closer comparison the 
Light Brigade that made the renowned charge at Bal- 
laklava carried into the charge 673 men rank and file, 
and lost 247 men of that number, or 36 per cent., while 
73 Regiments of the United States army sustained losses 
of over 50 per cent, in single engagements, and of the 
Confederate army more than 50 Regiments sustained 
losses of more than 50 per cent. From records at hand 
we find First Texas at Antietam 82 per cent., the 
Twenty- First Georgia at Manassas 76 per cent., the 
Twenty-Sixth North Carolina at Gettysburg 71 per 
cent., the Eighth Tennessee at Stone River, 68 per cent. ; 
the 7th S. Carolina at Manassas, 66 per cent., the First 
Alabama at Chickamauga, 64 per cent. ; the Fifteenth 
Virginia at Antietam, 58 per cent.; the Sixth Alabama 
at Seven Pines, 66 per cent., and many others, well 
known in smaller commands, will show equal losses, 
while we see the heaviest loss in the Franco- German 
war was sustained by the Third Westphalia Regiment at 
Mars -la- tour, which was 49 per cent. 

Take the army of Tennessee and Mississippi under 
Gen. Braxton Bragg, Sept. 19, 20, 1863, and from the 
report of that officer, from an army of 40,000 men his 
loss was 17,095 at Chickamauga, thus recording the 
bloodiest battle ever fought with gunpowder, to say 
nothing of Murfresboro, Dec. 31, 1862, and Jan. 1, 1863, 
where the same army lost one-third in killed and 
wounded. Thus is shown the hardest fought battles of 
civilization and the bloodiest fieids known in the whole 
of Christendom. 

The reports from the medical department show the 
defenses of Vicksburg from the battle of Baton Rouge, 
Aug. 5, 1862, to the evacuation of Jackson, Mississippi, 


July 19, 1863 the Confederate army lost in killed, 
wounded, and prisoners 54,415 men — an army larger 
than was ever assembled on any one battlefield under 
any Confederate general. 

From Jan. 1882 to July 1863, a period of 19 months, 
over 400,000 wounds were treated by the medical corps. 

An estimate shows that the average soldier was treat- 
ed for wounds or sickness six times during four years' 

Of 600,000 men enlisted, the surgeon -general esti- 
mates that there were killed and died from wounds and 
disease 200,000, or one-third of the aggregate enlist- 
ment. That 200,000 were prisoners of war and held for 
indefinite periods by the United States. That out of the 
remaining 200,000 100,000 were discharged, over age, or 
disabled and deserted and 100,000 were surrendered. 


General Shafter, Jane 20th, 1898, with 35,000 men, ar- 
rives at Santiago; 22nd, lands; 25th, encircles Santiago ; 
July 3d, Admiral Sampson's fleet destroys the fleet of 
Cervera — captures 13,000 prisoners. July 8th, Shafter 
demands the surrender of the Spanish army at Santiago ; 
10th, bombards their forts; 12th, again demands sur- 
render; 14th, General Toral, commanding Santiago, for- 
mally surrenders about 24,000 Spaniards. 

General U. S. Grant, February 1863, moved an army 

to invest Vicksburg, first by way of Holly Springs, then 

by Chickesaw Bayou, then by Williams Canal, then by 
Lake Providence, then by Yazoo Pass, then by Steele's 
Bayou, then by Miliken's Bend and New Carthage, cut 
off, and then finally sent his army down the west side of 
the Mississippi river, to Grand Gulf, and attacked from 
the rear and below; fought at Port Gibson, at Raymond, 
at Jackson, at Edwards Depot and Big Black river and 
after receiving reinforcements augumenting his army to 
150,000 men, laid siege to Vicksburg, which lasted four 
months, and finally General Pemberton surrendered 
less than 30,000 men. Steel met steel. 


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